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Akari Unfolded: A Collection by YMER&MALTA at The Noguchi Museum

Part of Oui Design 2018

YMER&MALTA / Benjamin Graindorge, edaLight

The Noguchi Museum presents a new collection by French design studio YMER&MALTA : Akari Unfolded. This project is part of Oui Design, a program initiated by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the U.S. and FACE Foundation, supported by Institut Français-Paris, the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, the Florence Gould Foundation, and Van Cleef & Arpels.

On view at the Museum from February 28, 2018, through January 27, 2019, Akari Unfolded: A Collection by YMER&MALTA, presents a selection of the 26 lamps created by this leading French design studio, which made its reputation working with contemporary designers and France’s legendary craft industries. Founded by Valérie Maltaverne, YMER&MALTA worked with five designers on this project : Sebastian Bergne, Océane Delain, Benjamin Graindorge, Nendo, and Sylvain Rieu Piquet, undertaking a rich exploration of the essential values of Isamu Noguchi's Akari light sculptures, asking themselves how Noguchi might work with new materials and processes to expand the wider universe of his light sculptures. The resulting designs are not variations on Akari, but an exciting proof of how Noguchi’s sophisticated hybridities, such as craft and industry, and tradition and progress, continue to provide a powerful model for contemporary design.

Founded by Valérie Maltaverne in 2009, the design firm YMER&MALTA occupies the crossroads of design, art, and craft, creating timeless contemporary pieces by marrying traditional materials and techniques with new technologies. Thematic collections have been developed around glass, wood marquetry, marble, leather, resin, and tapestry. YMER&MALTA pieces are in numerous collections, including that of the prestigious Musée des Arts Décoratifs and the Centre Pompidou, in Paris. For one of its most celebrated collections, the studio worked with the Cité Internationale de la Tapisserie D’Aubusson (a center for traditional Aubusson tapestry that includes a museum) to create eight pieces that drew on the 600-year-old tapestry tradition of Aubuson.

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■  On May 11 at 6PM, join us for a tour of the exhibition led by Valérie Maltaverne, founder and director of Ymer&Malta and Dakin Hart, Senior Curator of the Noguchi Museum.

The Noguchi Museum will be closed exceptionally Wednesday May 23, 2018.

As part of Oui Design, a program developed by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in partnership with FACE Foundation, supported by Institut français-Paris, the French Ministry of Culture, the Florence Gould Foundation, Van Cleef & Arpels. Additional support for women designers has been provided by Fondation CHANEL.

Akari Unfolded: A Collection by YMER&MALTA is supported, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council and from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.