Major support for The Clamor of Ornament is provided by The Coby Foundation, Ltd., the Director's Circle of The Drawing Center, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Generous funding is provided by Dita Amory, Michèle Gerber Klein, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Hilary and Peter Hatch, Sara Story Design, Josh Smith, and Barbara Toll. Additional support is provided by Amy Gold and Brett Gorvy, Isabel Stainow Wilcox, Phyllis Tuchman, Paul Morelli, the Roy and Niuta Titus Foundation, Suzanne Slesin and Michael Steinberg, Adelphi Paper Hangings, LLC, Plain English Design, and Madeline Weinrib. Support for the exhibition catalog is provided by Furthermore: a program of the J. M. Kaplan Fund.
Bringing together more than 200 objects produced over the past five centuries, The Clamor of Ornament: Exchange, Power, and Joy from the Fifteenth Century to the Present explores ornament in architecture, art, and design through the lens of drawing. The exhibition foregrounds ornament’s potential as a mode of communication, a form of currency, and a means of exchange across geographies and cultures. The Clamor of Ornament seeks to address the multilayered complexity of the history of ornament, including the dissonance between the unequal and destructive relationships that mediate its movement between sources. Together, the objects on view both celebrate and interrogate ornament’s fluidity by making connections between motifs, methods, and intentions.
The exhibition features a broad range of drawings, prints, textiles and objects, including eighteenth-century Indian palampores; Pennsylvania Dutch Fraktur drawings; kosode paper designs; Navajo textiles; and Albrecht Dürer’s Islamic-inspired woodblock-print knots. This broad approach to the subject of ornament also encompasses original architectural drawings by Louis Sullivan and Sir David Adjaye; contemporary ornament in the form of logos from luxury fashion brands; and even present-day designs for patisserie.
Organized by Dr. Emily King, Guest Curator, with Duncan Tomlin and Margaret-Anne Logan. Exhibition design by Studio Frith.