“My Little Gem”
Tours of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Smith House
Sunday, September 30, 1pm & 3pm
Buy your tickets today before the tours sell out!
When Sara Stein met Melvyn Maxwell Smith, she had never heard of Frank Lloyd Wright. Won over by Melvyn’s passion for architecture and undeterred by their school teacher salaries, the couple would go on to meet Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin and commission a custom home. Designed in 1946, the Smith House in Bloomfield Hills is an excellent example of Wright’s Usonian ideal, which aimed to build quality houses for the American middle class. The lovingly restored home, which Wright called “My Little Gem” during a 1951 visit, features an L-shaped floor plan and horizontal, cantilevered roof planes. This tour offers a unique view of this special home, its landscape, and the story of a couple whose vision and determination allowed them to achieve their dream.
Admission is $25.00/person and is non refundable. Please call 248-645-3319 for reservations. Tours depart via bus from the turning circle in front of the Art Museum promptly at 1pm and 3pm. Late arrivals cannot be accommodated once the bus departs. Please check in at the front desk of the Art Museum at least 15 minutes before your tour departs. Space is limited to 25 people so prepaid reservations are recommended. Tour fee includes museum admission.
“New exhibitions ably display the breadth and range of art in metro Detroit”
By Mark Stryker Detroit Free Press Art Critic
Click here to read.
Through October 28, 1:00-2:30pm every Sunday
“The Cranbrook Vision: Architecture, Landscape and Sculpture”
Join us for a walking tour that highlights some of the wonders of the Cranbrook campus. Springing from the visionary ideas of George and Ellen Booth and their collaborations with Arts & Crafts designers, the early decades of the twentieth century laid the groundwork for our stunning National Heritage Landmark site. Following these formative years, the Cranbrook campus became an evolving canvas for the architects, artists, and gardeners who worked to shape the Booths’ desire to create spaces of meaning, distinction, and beauty.
In keeping with Cranbrook’s Arts & Crafts origins, the tour touches on both large and small artistic elements including historical plantings, campus-wide planning vistas, and intricate brickwork on building elevations. Preservation issues are also addressed. Select interiors will be explored, as well as most notably the original Cranbrook School for Boys Dining Hall where visitors are immersed in one of Eliel Saarinen’s great “total works of art.”
Tours depart from the front desk of the Art Museum. Space is limited to 20 people so prepaid reservations are recommended. Reservations are non-transferable and non- refundable.
Please call 248-645-3320 to make your reservation. Admission: $15.00/adults; $10.00/ArtMembers; $13.00/seniors 65+; and $11.00/students with ID. Restroom facilities are very limited on the tour and no food or beverages are available. Please wear comfortable walking shoes and dress according to the weather as the tour will take place rain or shine!
Exhibition through Sunday, October 14, 2012
George Nelson is considered one of the most influential figures in American design during the second half of the twentieth century. Operating from the western side of Michigan as Design Director at the Zeeland-based furniture manufacturer Herman Miller for more than twenty years, Nelson had his sights firmly focused on Cranbrook, which was also playing a defining role in the development of Modernism.
Organized by the Vitra Design Museum in Germany, “George Nelson: Architect/ Writer/ Designer Teacher” is the first comprehensive retrospective of Nelson’s work. It has been touring in Europe and most recently in the United States at the Bellevue Art Museum in Seattle. Cranbrook is the final stop in the US tour and the last opportunity to see this major exhibition before the work returns to Germany.
More than 120 three-dimensional objects including examples of chairs, benches, desks, cabinets, lamps, and clocks, as well as over 50 historical documents, such as drawings, photographs, architectural models, and films, form the core of the exhibition. Nelson was responsible for the production of numerous furnishings and interior designs that became modern classics, including the Coconut Chair (1956), the Marshmallow Sofa (1956), the Ball Clock (1947, the Bubble Lamps (1952 onwards).
“George Nelson: Architect, Writer, Designer, Teacher” is an exhibition of the Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, Germany. The American tour of the exhibition has been generously sponsored by Herman Miller. Herman Miller also is the presenting sponsor of the exhibition at Cranbrook Art Museum. Additional support for the exhibition at Cranbrook is provided by the Alden B. Dow Home & Studio. Promotion of the exhibition is supported by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.
For more information, please click here.
Saarinen House is Eliel Saarinen’s Art Deco masterwork and the jewel of Cranbrook’s architectural treasures. Designed in the late 1920s and located at the heart of Cranbrook Academy of Art, Saarinen House served as the home and studio of the Finnish-American designer Eliel Saarinen (Cranbrook’s first resident architect and the Academy’s first president and head of the Architecture Department) and Loja Saarinen (the Academy’s first head of the Weaving Department) from 1930 through 1950. The extraordinary interior, now impeccably restored, features the Saarinens’ original furnishings, including Eliel’s delicately-veneered furniture and Loja’s sumptuous textiles, as well as early furniture designs by their son Eero Saarinen.
Docent-guided Public Tours of Saarinen House depart from the front desk of Cranbrook Art Museum, where tickets also may be purchased on tour days. Public Tours are scheduled May 3 through October 28, 2012, 2:00pm Thursday through Saturday, and at 1:00pm and 3:00pm on Sunday. Tours are limited to 12 guests.
The tours are about 90 minutes long and include stairs and two ten-minute walks on Cranbrook’s campus. Tours take place rain or shine.
Public Tour Fees: ArtMembers free; $10 Adults; $8 Seniors (65+); and $6 full-time students with ID and children. Saarinen House Tours include admission to Cranbrook Art Museum.
A limited number of Private Tours of Saarinen House are available Monday through Friday, May through October, with at least three weeks advance notice. Private Tour Fees: $10 ArtMembers; $15 Adults and Seniors; and $10 full-time students with ID (with a minimum Private Tour group fee of $100). To inquire about the availability of a Private Tour, please call 248-645-3319.
Saturday April 21 Through Sunday, May 13, 2012
Cranbrook Academy of Art is delighted to present its annual exhibition of work by the 2012 class of Masters of Fine Arts and Masters of Architecture students in the newly renovated galleries of Cranbrook Art Museum. The Academy’s program is interdisciplinary in orientation, representing the crossing and merging of mediums as well as the investigation and use of content from diverse areas of thought. The exhibition of these 79 emerging artists reflects the culmination of their time spent at the Academy and ranges from painting and sculpture to video, photography and installation.
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan – No Object is an Island: New Dialogues with the Cranbrook Collection is the provocative exhibition that will reopen the expanded and renovated Cranbrook Art Museum at Cranbrook Academy of Art on November 11, 2011. Inside and around the landmark building, designed by renowned Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen, the exhibition will pair the work of 50 leading contemporary artists and designers with an equal number of objects from Cranbrook’s outstanding permanent collection of 20th- and 21st-century art and design. Visitors will discover a Nick Cave Soundsuit side-by-side with a tapestry by Arts and Crafts master May Morris. A conceptual partnership that Maarten Baas projects between himself and Marc Newson meets a very real early collaboration of Eero Saarinen and Charles Eames. And Whitney Biennalist Tony Mattelli’s hyperrealist sculpture, The Hunter, faces off with one of fellow sculptor Kate Clark’s ravishing taxidermy beasts with a human face.
The pairings reinstate the challenging dialogue that has characterized Cranbrook since the revolutionary graduate school and museum opened more than 80 years ago. In so doing, No Object is an Island is an analog for Cranbrook Art Museum itself, the renovation of which transcends common notions of museum practice. At Cranbrook, the era of museum collections hidden in remote and dusty storage lockers is over. After the museum’s two-year, $22 million upgrade, the entire collection will now be visible—and accessible—to students, scholars, and visitors. Classes will occur in view of, or actually inside, the museum’s glass-walled vaults, where the art will reside in cabinetry custom-designed to display it exhibition-style at all times. Objects in the galleries will be keyed to additional collections materials readily available for study in a research center within the new 20,000 square-foot Collections Wing. The buildings and their holdings will become one integrated teaching and learning machine, an educational resource like no other.
For the full press release, click here.