NewsFile | Dadaist Zines, A Mega Vessel, Death of the Art Museum + More
Welcome to NewsFile, your weekly round-up of newsy tidbits and happenings from the world of contemporary ceramic art and contemporary ceramics. We begin our week with some sobering statistics regarding art museum attendance.
Museum Attendance Declining
Art and culture museums may be in trouble. Attendance in many museums across the U.S. is falling, but the reasons why aren’t so clear, Hyperallergic reports citing statistical evidence coming out of the scene in Baltimore.
Mary Carole McCauley, a reporter for the Baltimore Sun has recently written about precipitous declines in attendance, citing drops in annual attendance at the Baltimore Museum of Art of 12.7% in the last 15 years, at the Walters Art Museum of 24.1% from a peak of 195,000 visitors in 2008, and at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture, which has seen attendance sink 53% from the opening-year high of 104,500 visitors.
The sobering numbers find corroboration nationwide conveying a narrative of museum-going being on the downtrend.
She writes that “the National Endowment for the Arts reports attendance at art museums dropped 16.8 percent — even as the population grew by more than 33 million people, and museums began offering free admission.” It’s not clear to me where these statistics originate. McCauley cites a National Endowment for the Arts report that shows that 18.7% of US adults visited an art exhibition in a museum or gallery in 2015, as opposed to 26.5% in 2002 — which is a drop of only 7.8% not 16.8%.
Surface Design Show
The UK’s upcoming Surface Design Show (London, February 6 – 8, 2018) presents the latest materials for architecture and interior design, Dezeen writes adding it’s the only event to focus solely on interior and exterior surface materials such as ceramic tile.
This year’s event will see over 170 exhibitors present “the very best” in surface design, from hand-crafted surfaces to the latest technological advances in architectural lighting.
Giant Vessel Structure Nears Completion
Construction on British designer Thomas Heatherwick’s Heatherwick Studio’s monumental Vesselstructure, is expected at its full height, Dezeen writes. Made up of 154 interlinking honeycomb staircases, the structure will form the centerpiece of New York’s Hudson Yards development and will highlight views of the up and coming area.
The steps are arranged in layers that widen from a hexagonal base that measures 50 feet (15 metres) in diameter to a top layer that is 150 feet (46 metres) across.
Hot off the Press: Dadaist Zines Celebrate Centennial
As part of the Dada centennial celebrations, Ugly Duckling Presse has released a limited-edition, boxed-set of the two facsimile editions of the small art journal The Blind Man titles The Blind Man: New York Dada, 1917, Hyperallergic writes.
The Blind Man and rongwrong were seminal New York Dada magazines edited and published by Marcel Duchamp, Henri-Pierre Roché, and Beatrice Wood in 1917. This facsimile edition, introduced by Sophie Seita, celebrates the 100th anniversary of their publication. The box set also includes a two-color offset reproduction of Beatrice Wood’s poster for The Blind Man’s Ball (1917) and a letterpress facsimile of Man Ray’s The Ridgefield Gazook (1915). Translations of the French texts by Elizabeth Zuba accompany the facsimile reprints.
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