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New Exhibition Takes Viewers Down the Rabbit Hole With Studio Job

Sort of like Jeff Koons, but in miniature

If you're a fan of all things whimsical in the world of design, you're in luck: Until late this summer (Monday, August 21, to be precise), New York's Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) is hosting "Studio Job MAD HOUSE," the first U.S. solo exhibition of the work of Studio Job, a kooky Antwerp and Amsterdam-based design firm.

The studio, founded in 2000 by collaborators Nynke Tynagel and Job Smeets, creates unusual, highly ornamented pieces that challenge the distinction between art and design—think wardrobes with rough, tunnel-like openings bored through their centers and architectural monuments scaled down, altered, and fashioned into tables.

According to MAD, Studio Job has "developed a distinctive body of highly expressive and opulent work, characterized by pattern, ornament, humor, and historical, sociocultural, and personal narrative."

In keeping with the atelier's refusal to be confined to one particular medium, the retrospective includes furniture, art objects, lighting, sculpture, wall and floor coverings, and other uncategorizable pieces that have been widely collected.

No stranger to controversy, Studio Job and its founders are considered enfants terribles of the art and design world. Nevertheless, their exquisite craftsmanship and use of traditional applied arts—including bronze casting, gilding, and stained-glass—calls to mind the ateliers of "Old Masters," redefining applied arts for the contemporary age.

The exhibit features includes some of the studio's most iconic works, including 2014's "Burj Khalifa," and "Pyramid" from 2008. Read more over at MAD's website.