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Museum of Arts and Design Announces Fall 2015 Artist Studios Participants

Artists include Margaret Braun, Liz Collins, Kate Clements, Megan Canning, Maika’i Tubbs and Stephanie Beck

New York, NY (October 27, 2015)

The Museum of Arts and Design is pleased to announce the newest selection of artists and designers in the Artist Studios. Open daily to the public, the Artist Studios host emerging and mid-career artists and designers as they produce work in a live studio environment, offering one of the Museum's most unique educational experiences. Visitors are encouraged to inquire about artists' processes, materials and concepts while they work. The Artist Studios program fosters dialogue and serves as a model of interactivity and innovative engagement that benefits both artists and museum visitors through making and conversations exploring the creative process.

Launched in 2008, the Artist Studios have welcomed more than 100 artists and continue to be one of the most popular components of the Museum's visitor experience, drawing museumgoers to its 6th floor educational space for a hands-on, behind-the-scenes look at artistic practices.

"Education is at the heart of the Museum's mission and a hallmark of the visitor experience," said Glenn Adamson, Nanette L. Laitman Director. "The Artist Studios demystify artistic practice by inviting artists and designers to use the Museum as a laboratory for live interaction and creative experimentation. As a result, audiences of all backgrounds are able to marry their in-gallery experience with an understanding of the connection between maker, materials and process."

Fall 2015 artists include Margaret Braun, Liz Collins, Kate Clements, Megan Canning, Maika'i Tubbs and Stephanie Beck. They are among the first group of artists and designers to be chosen by the Artist Studios Selection Committee, which includes Ken Amarit, artist and artist studio alumnus; Elissa Auther, Windgate Research Curator, Museum of Arts and Design; Carli Beseau, Manager of Interpretation, Museum of Arts and Design; Rama Chorpash, Director of Product Design, Associate Professor, Parsons; Lisa Dent, Director of Grant and Services, Creative Capital Foundation; Natalia Kakazawa, Assistant Director, Elisabeth Foundation Studios and artist; Ron Labaco, Marcia Docter Senior Curator, Museum of Arts and Design; Cathleen Lewis, V.P. of Education and Programs, Museum of Arts and Design; Cybele Maylone, Executive Director, Urban Glass; and Isa Rodrigues, Adult Programs Director, Textile Arts Center. This season's committee reviewed the work of nearly 200 applicants.


Margaret Braun (Tuesday)

Margaret Braun's medium is sugar. Growing up in Levittown, New York, amongst thousands of cookie-cutter houses, Braun was curious about the ways in which personal identity thrives. As a child, she responded to this environment by filling notebooks and covering surfaces with ornate sequential patterns. As an adult, she rediscovered this solace by decorating cakes.

During her time at MAD, Braun is designing, creating and executing an installation of 2,000 hand-hewn sugar cups produced through a variety of techniques from molding sugar to painting decorations in gold leaf. Her process is rigorous and methodical, creating a studio environment that is equal parts the workplace of a fine artist and of a craftsperson operating under a strict production schedule.

Braun is the author of Cakewalk (2001, Rizzoli), teaches throughout Europe and South America, and has been featured extensively in film, print and TV.

Liz Collins (Wednesday)

In addition to being a visual artist, Liz Collins has had a robust career as a textile and knitwear designer. These complementary paths have led to a studio practice where her art and applied design coalesce: a painting is a rug is a blanket is a dress is a sculpture. Collins explores the relationship between the body as a site for engagement with physical space, particularly architecture, and the resulting dialogue that emerges.

In the Artist Studios, Collins is working on an emergent body of work entitled Optic Vibrations and Energy Fields. The work includes paintings suspended by networks of yarn and cord, textile works, and wall pieces made with custom fabrics. Collins' interest in explosions, optic imagery, tension and release, and the language of pattern is present in her most recent body of work.

Collins received her BFA and MFA in Textiles from Rhode Island School of Design. She has exhibited extensively in the US and abroad, and teaches and lectures regularly at universities.

Kate Clements (Thursday)

Kate Clements is a glass artist whose work blurs the boundaries between body and object, and beauty and repugnance. She aims to show the interplay between fashion and modernity and how taste, even 'bad' taste, can be celebrated and mimicked by different social spheres.

Fashion, adornment and ornament have vicious lifecycles whereby newness is simultaneously associated with death and demise. At MAD, Clements continues her explorations of rendering glass to read as ice, sugar, honey, and even caviar, which reference these lifecycles. She draws and sculpts with frit glass and also experiments with upholstery and natural materials such as fresh flowers and fruit.

Clements received her BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute and recently completed her MFA in Glass at the Tyler School of Art at Temple University where she was awarded a University Fellowship.

Megan Canning (Friday)

Megan Canning's deep fascination with the various systems of the human body stems from a long interest in memory and how our bodies gather information through the five senses. She began incorporating hand-embroidery into her paintings nearly fifteen years ago because she was attracted to how stitching literally pierces the 'skin' of the canvas, creating an orderly surface with a messy underbelly.

At MAD, Canning is working on a new series of contemporary tapestries that combine hand-embroidery, painted silk and soft sculptural elements. Her aim is to create "intricate, sensual pieces that evoke the mystery and beauty of the inner workings of the human body."

Canning received her BFA in Art Education from Ohio University and her MFA in Painting from Hunter College. Her work has been exhibited, published and collected throughout the United States.

Maika'i Tubbs (Saturday)

Maika'i Tubbs uses found detritus to create sculptures and installations around themes of obsolescence, consumption and ecology. He regards discarded objects as untapped resources and transforms them to reveal a world of hidden, limitless potential. His process-oriented work reflects honest observations of unnatural familiarity influenced by the blurred boundaries between organic and artificial life.

In the Artist Studios, Tubbs is exploring a project derived from oceanic observation. Stepping Stones are sculptural rock formations made of trash and waste materials inspired by plastiglomerate, a new geological term used to describe the fusion of micro plastic, rock, sand, basalt, coral and wood discovered last year on Hawai'i Island. Tubbs will be combining the forms to make larger pieces before he cuts into them to reveal their hidden complex layers.

Tubbs received his BFA in Painting from the University of Hawai'i at Manoa and his MFA from Parsons The New School of Design. Tubbs has exhibited internationally.

Stephanie Beck (Sunday)

Stephanie Beck is interested in exposing the fragility and transience within the seemingly static architecture of the public and private spaces in which we live. She sees buildings as surrogates for ourselves and works with them to investigate and illustrate our human frailties. Beck works primarily with paper as it allows for quick construction and for combinations of drawing and printing with sculptural form.

At MAD, Beck is creating an interactive tabletop installation of cut paper buildings that will be manipulated by visitors to create a constantly changing cityscape. This interaction explores individual experiences of space and structure as well as the communal experience of a continually shifting built environment. Beck hopes that visitors are inspired to think more critically about how their city is organized and why.

Beck received a BA in Art History from the University of Virginia, completed a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and earned an MFA from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia.


Artist Studios Hours:
Tuesday - Sunday: 10:00 am – 1:30 pm; 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm

Thursday and Friday: 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm

The Artist Studios are supported in part by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, as well as the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

The Artist Studios Program has three sessions per year, each session running for approximately four months (17 – 18 weeks). Artists in the program work one regularly scheduled session per week, with additional evening sessions on Thursdays and Fridays.

MAD conducts a Request For Proposal (RFP) two to three times annually. The next RFP in 2015 will be posted in mid-November, with applications accepted until January 11, 2016. Artists submitting applications during this RFP process will be considered for two sessions: June – September 2016, and October 2016 – January 2017.



The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) champions contemporary makers across creative fields, presenting artists, designers, and artisans who apply the highest level of ingenuity and skill to their work. Since the Museum’s founding in 1956 by philanthropist and visionary Aileen Osborn Webb, MAD has celebrated all facets of making and the creative processes by which materials are transformed, from traditional techniques to cutting-edge technologies. Today, the Museum’s curatorial program builds upon a rich history of exhibitions that emphasize a cross-disciplinary approach to art and design, and reveals the workmanship behind the objects and environments that shape our everyday lives. MAD provides an international platform for practitioners who are influencing the direction of cultural production and driving 21st-century innovation, fostering a participatory setting for visitors to have direct encounters with skilled making and compelling works of art and design.

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