Brian Clarke: The Art of Light
MAD, New York
September 17, 2020 – February 21, 2021
An immersive exhibition of more than 100 works of stained glass, compositions in lead, and related drawings will showcase British artist Brian Clarke as one of the most important artists working in stained glass, at once a leader in new technology and a brilliant aesthetic innovator. Since the early 1970s, Clarke has collaborated with some of the world’s most prominent architects to create stained-glass designs and installations for hundreds of projects worldwide. The centerpiece of the exhibition will be more than twenty free-standing, glass screens. Animated by changing light and stained with exuberant, saturated colors, these dramatic works will transport audiences to the very frontier of what is possible in stained glass today.
Brian Clarke: The Art of Light is organized by the Sainsbury Centre in association with the Museum of Arts and Design. Brian Clarke: The Art of Light is made possible by presenting sponsor DAVID YURMAN with major support from Klara and Larry Silverstein and Michele and Marty Cohen, and Simona and Jerry Chazen.
Brian Clarke (b. 1953, Oldham, Lancashire, England) is the world’s most widely recognized stained-glass artist. His meteoric rise to prominence in the late 70s – buoyed by the energy of the Punk movement – was as a painter and polemicist championing the integration of art and architecture. Described by Andy Warhol as “the most glamorous artist to come out of England since the sixties”, Clarke lived and worked in New York in the 80s and 90s, where he produced some of the most significant developments in his work. Clarke’s commitment to total art has developed into a Renaissance engagement with multiple media, from painting, sculpture, ceramics, mosaic and tapestry to sets for opera, the ballet, and stadia. His reputation is based on installations and individual works, ranging from intimate to monumental in scale, for hundreds of projects worldwide.
Practicing in sacred and secular spaces, he has collaborated on projects and proposals with Zaha Hadid, Norman Foster, Arata Isozaki, Oscar Niemeyer, Renzo Piano, Future Systems, and other leading figures of Modern and contemporary architecture. Clarke’s work is represented in international public and private collections including the Tate, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Bavarian State Painting Collections, and the Sezon Museum of Modern Art, and has been the subject of exhibitions at international museums including the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague; Munich Stadtmuseum; the Centre International du Vitrail, Chartres; the Corning Museum of Glass, USA; the Hessisches Landesmuseum, Darmstadt,Germany; and Vitromusée, Romont. He lives and works in London.
The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) champions contemporary makers across creative fields and presents the work of artists, designers, and artisans who apply the highest level of ingenuity and skill. 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 twenty-first-century innovation, and fosters a participatory setting for visitors to have direct encounters with skilled making and compelling works of art and design. For more information, visit madmuseum.org.