Arts & Culture Event Notices

MFA Curator Visits North Bennet St. School to Talk Craft

Curating Contemporary Craft – an evening with MFA curator Emily Zilber at North Bennet Street School

Emily Zilber, MFA Curator

Contemporary artists working with craft media are encountering and adopting an ever-growing range of available ideas, tools, materials, and inspirations. As artistic practices change and grow, the museum not only plays a role in expanding our broad understanding of craft’s role in the today’s creative landscape but also helps place new dialogues around craft in a historical context.

In her talk, Emily Zilber, curator of contemporary decorative arts at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, discusses how the collecting and exhibiting of craft at the museum responsive to this larger contemporary conversation within the context of the MFA’s encyclopedic collections.

Zilber is the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston’s first Ronald L. and Anita C. Wornick Curator of Contemporary Decorative Arts. She is responsible for the MFA’s vibrant program of contemporary decorative arts, including guiding acquisitions and developing a presence for craft and design in the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art and throughout the museum. She also oversees the Daphne and Peter Farago Gallery, a dedicated space for modern and contemporary craft, design, and decorative arts. This gallery opened in September 2011 with “Crafting Contemporary: Selections from the Daphne Farago Collection.”

Other recent projects include the exhibition “New Blue-and-White”, which focuses on contemporary interpretations of blue-and-white traditions by makers across media (2013), the reinstallation of the Farago Gallery with works from the MFA’s permanent collection (opened August 2013). Upcoming projects include two exhibitions, one focused on the MFA’s collection of American ceramics and the other on themes in 21st century craft practice, to open in 2015.

Prior to joining the MFA, Zilber was assistant curator at Cranbrook Art Museum at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She has edited and written for numerous publications and speaks regularly on topics related to 20th and 21st-century decorative arts, craft, and design. Zilber holds a BA in art history from The University of Chicago and an MA from the Bard Graduate Center for Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material Culture.

Date: January 23, 2014
Time: 6:00pm
Place: Windgate Gallery, North Bennet Street School, 150 North St. Boston MA
Cost: Free
Handicap access: Yes
Parking: Limited street parking (metered).
Nearest T stops: Haymarket (Orange, Green lines)
Directions: via Google maps –
More info:
Contact: 617-227-0155 or

One Reply to “MFA Curator Visits North Bennet St. School to Talk Craft

  1. The “New Blue and White” exhibition at the MFA was a fresh and interesting exhibition. Felt like art, not like craft, yet was filled with masterfully crafted objects within a thoughtful and energetic installation. Looking forward to Ms. Ziber’s next project.

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