Around the Design World in 180 Words: Museums, Thieves and Gaga, Oh My!

As we reported yesterday, after struggling for years under a mountain of debt, the American Folk Art Museum has been forced to sell their building to the neighboring MoMA, moving to a much smaller space across town and likely losing a majority of their staff along the away. So what ultimately did the museum in? According to New York‘s Jerry Saltz, architecture is to blame. The critic writes that, as soon as their building opened in 2001, “it was immediately clear to many that the building was not only ugly and confining, it was also all but useless for showing art — especially art as visionary as this museum’s.” Saltz’ comments created a bit of an internal battle inside of the magazine, with its architecture critic penning a response entitled “Jerry Saltz Has It All Wrong About the American Folk Art Museum.”

Elsewhere in lousy museum news (though this is also kind of secretly impressive in the way all true crime art heists are), despite “1,600 antitheft alarms and 3,700 closed-circuit television cameras,” a group of thieves stole more than $1.5 million worth of antique jewelry boxes from inside Beijing’s Forbidden City. The pieces were there as part of a visiting exhibit and the theft was discovered after a man was spotted fleeing the scene. “Staff at the palace museum were reported to have found a large hole in the back wall of the exhibition space. Entering through the hole, they found the exhibition cabinets pried open.”

Finally, if you read one thing today (beside, of course, this post you’re reading right now), make it Eric Wilson‘s wonderful review in the NY Times of Lady Gaga‘s first “fashion and art” column for the magazine V. However, those who critiqued our post last year about the musician’s desire to have “an All Gaga exhibit in the Louvre,” of which there were many (and of which confused us mightily), might want to avoid reading it, as Wilson gets a touch sarcastic and snarky in spots.