Just in Time for the Holidays, “This Season’s Guide to Educational Toys” Helps Parents Choose the Best Products to Nurture Their Kids’ Interests

Noodle and Parents’ Choice Holiday Gift List — The Best Educational Toys to Inspire Future Artists, Scientists, Filmmakers, and More

It’s a question as old as time: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” And the answers are as vast as a child’s imagination, running the gamut from rock star to teacher to doctor to mermaid. Many may dismiss these aspirations as childhood fancy, but studies have shown that the interests we have as kids influence our future occupations, with as many as one-third of people eventually choosing a related field. As the holiday season approaches, the experts at Noodle, the most comprehensive website for education information and resources, have teamed up with the Parents’ Choice Foundation to create This Season’s Guide to Educational Toys for Kids, a gift list to help parents choose educational products that entertain, teach, stimulate the imagination, and spark creativity — and that just may help their future filmmaker, chef, or novelist realize his or her dream.

Choose Better. Learn Better. (PRNewsFoto/Noodle)

Choose Better. Learn Better. (PRNewsFoto/Noodle)

Noodle is an education website helping parents and students make better decisions about learning. Using interactive search tools, families can find the right preschool, college, tutor, or any other learning resource. In addition, they can read expertly authored articles, ask questions and get answers from some of the leading minds in education, and connect with others in their communities.

Childhood interests can drive our passions and talents as adults,” said Suzanne Podhurst, Editor-in-Chief of Noodle. “And parents can help foster these interests with age-appropriate educational toys and games, like the ones found on our Guide to Educational Toys for Kids. Play is so important in helping kids develop skills such as critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving — which will serve them well as adults in any occupation.”Future Architect — Toys for Kids Who Love Building

Working with the Parents’ Choice Foundation, the nation’s oldest nonprofit guide to quality children’s media and toys — best known for the Parents’ Choice AwardsⓇ —, the experts at Noodle have curated lists for nine occupations, with a total of 59 toys, games, books, and more for children ages 2–16. Parents and friends can find recommendations for products to nurture and inspire kids in a variety of areas, from art and architecture to cooking and science — and beyond: There are also toy lists for aspiring filmmakers, veterinarians, and even stunt doubles. (Descriptions, pricing information, and age ranges are also included.)Future Artist — Toys for Kids Who Love Art

Below is a list of the nine categories included in This Season’s Guide to Education Toys for Kids. The full list and links to all of the recommended products can be found on the Noodle website – links to individual lists are:

Future Architect — Toys for Kids Who Love Building
Future Artist — Toys for Kids Who Love Art
Future Chef — Toys for Kids Who Love Cooking
Future Engineer — Toys for Kids Who Love Engineering
Future Filmmaker Toys for Kids Who Love Movies
Future Novelist — Toys for Kids Who Love Reading and Writing
Future Scientist— Toys for Kids Who Love Science
Future Stunt Double — Toys for Kids Who Love Action and Adventure
Future Veterinarian — Toys for Kids Who Love Animals Continue reading

Highly Anticipated Opening of Milwaukee Art Museum’s Renovated Permanent Collection Galleries Set for November 24

Restored, Reinstalled, and Reimagined Museum Delivers a New Future for the Iconic Milwaukee Institution and a Visitor Experience to Match the New Space

The Milwaukee Art Museum, the largest visual art institution in Wisconsin and one of the oldest art museums in the nation, will reopen its Permanent Collection Galleries to the public on Tuesday, November 24. The reopening is the culmination of a 6-year, $34 million project to transform the visitor experience through dramatically enhanced exhibition and public spaces and bright, flowing galleries.

The renovated Milwaukee Art Museum on the shore of Lake Michigan is captured at sunrise. (PRNewsFoto/The Milwaukee Art Museum)

The renovated Milwaukee Art Museum on the shore of Lake Michigan is captured at sunrise. (PRNewsFoto/The Milwaukee Art Museum)

The Milwaukee Art Museum is located on the shore of Lake Michigan. Its campus includes the Santiago Calatrava–designed Quadracci Pavilion, annually showcasing three feature exhibitions, and the Eero Saarinen–designed Milwaukee County War Memorial Center.

With a history dating back to 1888, The Museum’s Collection includes nearly 30,000 works from antiquity to the present, encompassing painting, drawing, sculpture, decorative arts, prints, video art and installations, and textiles. The Museum’s collections of American decorative arts, German Expressionist prints and paintings, 19th-century German painting and decorative arts, folk and Haitian art, and American art after 1960 are among the nation’s finest. It also holds one of the nation’s largest collections of paintings by Georgia O’Keeffe. Among its most famous works are Pablo Picasso’s The Cock of the Liberation and Gustave Caillebotte’s Boating on the Yerres.

The new Milwaukee Art Museum is poised to set the standard for a twenty-first-century museum at the heart of a great city,” said Museum Director Daniel Keegan. “What began as a desire to preserve the space and Collection grew into a significant expansion that rejuvenates and sets the future course for the entire institution.”

The project is part of a historic public-private partnership with Milwaukee County, which owns the buildings and provided $10 million toward the renovation, with the remaining $24 million raised through the Museum’s Plan for the Future campaign. It’s the first major re-imagining of the Museum’s extensive Collection areas, including the Museum’s 1957 Eero Saarinen-designed War Memorial Center and 1975 David Kahler-designed addition.

While addressing critical infrastructure upgrades, the renovation creates an intuitive and welcoming visitor experience to showcase the Museum’s world-class Collection. The renovated Collection Galleries and new east entrance now span 150,000 square feet. Within this space, the Museum is installing 2,500 works of art—almost 1,000 more than have been on view at one time in the past—from its rich Collection of works. Continue reading

Auctionata Presents “The Art Journey: Eleven Days, 16 Auctions, 20 Countries, 2000 Artworks”

Starting on November 27th, the leading online auction house Auctionata will take art lovers on an exciting journey to discover art from a broad range of nations, styles and artists: Over the course of eleven days, around 2,000 artworks will be offered for sale in 15 SPECIAL-THEMED LIVESTREAM AUCTIONS, with the crowning highlight auction ‘100 Masterworks‘ on December 7th. With this comprehensive series of art auctions, Auctionata is the first auction house to invite its international bidders on an excursion through the multi-faceted history of art, which can be followed from anywhere in the world. All auctions will be broadcasted via livestream and are accessible on www.auctionata.com or via the Auctionata Live iPhone App. The complete auction catalogue is available here: https://auctionata.com/intl/auction-calendar?tab=journeyAuctionata_The Art Journey_Nov 27 - Dec 7 2015

Auctionata brings the world of unique works of art, antiques and luxury collectibles to the internet. As the inventor of the livestream auction, Auctionata broadcasts auctions in real-time and provides an online auction room that is accessible to bidders worldwide via desktop and mobile devices. The house also offers all of the typical services of a traditional auction house via its website: Valuation, authentication, curation, auction and all related services, including a full authenticity guarantee. Sellers benefit from the free and non-binding online valuation, which gives a first quick perspective on potential auction results. Auctionata professionals and its global network of over 300 experts from more than 40 countries ensure a proper assessment and authentication of each object that goes to auction. The spectrum ranges from paintings, prints, sculptures and antiques to furniture, design objects and porcelain, to watches, jewelry, wine and even classic cars.

Auctionata 363 Lot 54- Jan X. Kaniewski, Miniature, Alexander Nikolaevich, 1839

Auctionata 363 Lot 54- Jan X. Kaniewski, Miniature, Alexander Nikolaevich, 1839

The journey starts on November 27th with Eastern European and Russian art. In two consecutive auctions, bidders will find paintings of renowned artists such as Franz Roubaud and Nikolai Bogdanov-Belsky, as well as decorative arts, porcelain, bronze, and silver objects and a particularly noteworthy collection of miniature paintings.

Auctionata 363 Lot 27, Plate from the Military Service of Tsar Nicholas I, 1836

Auctionata 363 Lot 27, Plate from the Military Service of Tsar Nicholas I, 1836

On November 28th, the journey will take bidders to the Netherlands, Belgium and Scandinavia, with an auction focusing on Old Master paintings, as well as 19th century artworks and expressive paintings from the 20th century. In the subsequent auction, works of the German masters of the 19th century, such as Christian Eduard Boettcher and Carl Spitzweg will be offered.

The next destination is Austria on November 30th, when a comprehensive range of paintings of Austrian artists of the 19th century, such as Johann N. Rauch, Albin Egger-Lienz, Herbert Gurschner and Carl Probst will go under the hammer. The following auction ‘German Art of the 20th Century‘ will present works by important representatives of both Impressionism and Expressionism, such as Otto Modersohn, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff and Max Ernst.

Auctionata, 363 Lot 44 - Konstantin F

Auctionata, 363 Lot 44 – Konstantin F. Juon (1875-1958), Lubyanka Square, Oil, 1920s

The auctions on December 1st continue with modern and contemporary art from Austria, featuring a particularly noteworthy collection of Hundertwasser prints. Moreover, the auction ‘German Zeitgeist: Post-War Art‘ will present several highlights, including works by Horst Antes, Martin Kippenberger and Herbert Zangs. Continue reading

Cyber Monday: Great Diamond Deals from Israel Direct to Consumers

Cyber Monday is coming up again and the Israeli Diamond Industry is once more offering consumers very attractive deals on loose diamonds and diamond jewelry on its popular e-commerce platform which goes live today. Developed by the Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI), the dedicated website Israel Diamond Deals is offering fancy color and white diamonds, as well as diamond jewelry from some of Israel’s leading companies at discounts of up to 50%. Since IDI is providing the sales platform at no cost to sellers, consumers can enjoy greater discounts than can be expected elsewhere.

Cyber Monday Diamond Deals from Israel offer specially picked diamonds and diamond jewelry at great prices. These unique earrings by Aradama, with diamonds and rubies in 18 k gold, sell on the site for $7,840 instead of $9,800 (PRNewsFoto/Israel Diamond Institute Group)

Cyber Monday Diamond Deals from Israel offer specially picked diamonds and diamond jewelry at great prices. These unique earrings by Aradama, with diamonds and rubies in 18 k gold, sell on the site for $7,840 instead of $9,800 (PRNewsFoto/Israel Diamond Institute Group)

Israel Diamond Deals enjoyed unprecedented success when it was first launched last year on Cyber Monday. Giving consumers direct access to one of the world’s leading diamond centers, the site is again offering hand-picked diamonds and diamond jewelry in the following categories: polished white and natural fancy color stones, engagement rings, right hand rings, pendants, earrings and bracelets. Discounts on the items range from 6% to 50% and list prices start at $700 and go up to over $450,000.

The most expensive item is a 6.82 carat fancy vivid yellow radiant diamond of VS2 clarity and GIA certified, selling for $366,000 after a 20% discount. A 0.63 carat fancy intense yellow radiant diamond of VS1 clarity and certified by the GIA sells for $1,260, after a 50% discount. A black diamond and pearl bracelet listing at $700 is being offered at $560.The least expensive item is a 7 diamond engagement ring set in gold for $500 at a discount of 27%.

The Cyber Monday Israel Diamond Deals sales platform will be live from November 23 – December 4.

The Israeli Diamond Industry, while still largely B2B, has expanded in recent years into retail sales, with many companies offering loose stones and jewelry online. Each of the Israeli companies featured on the site is experienced at fulfilling B2C sales, either through their own sites or through eBay or Etsy. IDI has provided active support and training to enable more Israeli diamond companies to sell online to businesses and consumers.

IDI Managing Director Eli Avidar said, “Israeli companies are interested in expanding their reach into consumer markets, especially via digital marketing channels. IDI provides them with the tools to take advantage of these technologies, easily and inexpensively.”

Njideka Akunyili Crosby Work To Be Featured In Outdoor Art Series

The Whitney Museum of American Art will unveil the latest work in a series of public art installations by key American artists across from the Museum’s new building and the southern entrance to the High Line, on the facade of 95 Horatio Street (the work is located on the southwest corner of Gansevoort and Washington Streets). Before Now After (Mama, Mummy and Mamma) (2015) by Njideka Akunyili Crosby is the third work to be featured as part of the series, which was initiated by the Whitney in partnership with TF Cornerstone and High Line Art. The first installation, in 2014, presented a work by Alex Katz and the second displayed a Michele Abeles work. The installation is organized by Whitney associate curator Jane Panetta.

Njideka Akunyili Crosby (b. 1983; Enugu, Nigeria) is a Los Angeles–based artist who makes large-scale, representational work that combines collage, drawing, painting, and printmaking. Her work routinely fuses both Nigerian and American influences and source material, reflecting on contemporary African life (often her family) along with her transcultural experience as an expatriate living in the United States, and the inherent difficulty of navigating these two realms. The works simultaneously become intimate while more broadly exploring the cultural complications of the dual worlds that she inhabits.

Akunyili Crosby’s new work for the billboard continues her ongoing exploration of her relationship to her family, specifically her sister, mother, and grandmother. The image is based on her painting, Mama, Mummy and Mamma (2014), now expanded for this site. Like much of her work, the composition fuses both a portrait (in this case of her sister), photographs of both her mother and grandmother, and an elaborate array of objects arranged carefully on a table, suggesting a still life composition. Additionally, the work’s placement at the foot of the High Line allows the viewer to peer into Akunyili Crosby’s carefully composed and invented world, reflective of her complex personal history. This is the artist’s first solo display presented by an institution in New York.

In late October of this year, The Studio Museum in Harlem announced that it was bestowing its Wein Prize – a $50,000 award won in the past by esteemed artists like Lorna Simpson, Glenn Ligon and Trenton Doyle Hancock – to Akunyili Crosby. The prize – established by George Wein, a founder of the Newport Jazz Festival, in honor of his wife, Joyce Alexander Wein, a trustee of the museum who died in 2005 – has been given every year since 2006 to established or emerging African-American artists.

She received her BA from Swarthmore College, a post baccalaureate certificate from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and an MFA from Yale University. Akunyili Crosby was the 2014 recipient of the Smithsonian American Art Museum‘s James Dicke Contemporary Artist Prize and her artwork has been exhibited at venues including the Hammer Museum, Art + Practice, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Museum at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, the New Museum, the Bronx Museum, the Museum of African Diaspora in partnership with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Victoria Miro, London.

Presented by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art commissions and produces public art projects on and around the High Line. Founded in 2009, High Line Art presents a wide array of artwork including site-specific commissions, exhibitions, performances, video programs, and a series of billboard interventions. Curated by Cecilia Alemani, the Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Curator & Director of High Line Art, and produced by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art invites artists to think of creative ways to engage with the uniqueness of the architecture, history, and design of the High Line and to foster a productive dialogue with the surrounding neighborhood and urban landscape.

TF Cornerstone was an early pioneer in the residential development of Greenwich Village’s Meat Market and converted the Manhattan Refrigerating Company building, now 95 Horatio Street, to apartments in 1986. The High Line originally ran through the building at the point where the Whitney installations will hang. TF Cornerstone has been a major presence in the Village for more than forty years and today is one of the largest apartment owners and managers in New York City. In addition, the company pioneered the transformation of Long Island City’s waterfront into an amenity-rich thoroughfare, played a major role in residential development on the West Side of Manhattan, and has developed other notable properties in the Financial District and Upper East Side, among others. The company is owned and directed by K. Thomas and Frederick Elghanayan.

The Whitney Museum of American Art, founded in 1930 by the artist and philanthropist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney (1875−1942), houses the foremost collection of American art from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Mrs. Whitney, an early and ardent supporter of modern American art, nurtured groundbreaking artists at a time when audiences were still largely preoccupied with the Old Masters. From her vision arose the Whitney Museum of American Art, which has been championing the most innovative art of the United States for more than eighty years.