Ron Arad exhibition at the MoMA: No Discipline

Ron Arad MoMA Exhibition

 Ron Arad artwork

The Museum of Modern Art Welcomes Ron Arad

Ron Arad’s Museum of Modern Art exhibition, the terrific No Discipline, demonstrates how an artist’s work and its milieu can complement each other perfectly. Here Arad’s rambunctious, often hugely influential designs and objects–his Restless Chairs and Readymades, his Wavys and Infinities, his Voids and Misfits–have been integrated into and displayed on and around the swirling, swooping Cage Sans Frontieres, which the artist created especially for the MoMA exhibit. The result is a sort of mischievous, free-spirited harmony, celebrating Ron Arad’s career as an industrial designer, an avowed maverick, a design-artist, a visionary, an architect, and any and all other labels that have been applied to Ron Arad and his work over the course of the last thirty-odd years.    

Ron Arad artwork 

Ron Arad’s MoMA exhibit is housed in the large room on the museum’s sixth floor, and is dominated by the dynamic, 16-foot-high, Cor-Ten steel Cage Sans Frontieres, which at first glance looks like the skeleton of some great sea creature. Closer inspection reveals that the fabulous structure functions as a display case of sorts, echoing, of course, the design of Ron Arad’s curlicued bookcases in his Bookworm series, which are also included in the show. The lighting is dim and dramatic, the eye-candy plentiful, and the room charged with creativity and dreams.  In short, Ron Arad’s presence at the Museum of Modern Art is a real treat.

Ron Arad artwork 

MoMA Art Highlights of Ron Arad

Ron Arad’s MoMA exhibit includes some of our favorites as well, such as This Mortal Coil, a stand-alone sculptural shelving unit–it’s the one that looks a giant, sprinting snail–which, like many of his pieces, has such movement and fluidity that it perhaps functions better as art than furniture (who would want to weigh such dynamism down with books and such?). We also love the Figure 8 and Ripples chairs featured in the MoMA exhibition, especially stacked high as they are here, in different colors and materials; his impish Bouncing Vases and Concrete Stereo, for which he immersed the delicate electronics into what looks like industrial waste; and the mechanized model for Ron Arad’s rotating Restaurant at Les Diablerets in Gstaad, precariously perched in the Alps and looking very James Bond indeed.

Ron Arad artwork 

Ron Arad at the MoMA details

Ron Arad: No Discipline will be on view at the Museum of Modern Art until October 19, 2009. The Museum of Modern Art is open Monday, Wednesday Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Friday until 8:00 p.m., when admission is free after 4:00 p.m. Closed Tuesdays. If you can’t make it to the show, the MoMA has an excellent, interactive, exhibition website, here.   

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