Judith Leiber: Crafting a New York Story

Museum of Art and Design (MAD)

2 Columbus Circle
New York, NY 10019

(212) 299-7777


General admission: $16.00, seniors: $14.00, students: $12.00

Event Dates

Apr 07, 2017

Apr 14, 2017

Apr 21, 2017

Apr 28, 2017

May 05, 2017

May 12, 2017

May 19, 2017

May 26, 2017

Jun 02, 2017

Jun 09, 2017

Jun 16, 2017

Jun 23, 2017

Jun 30, 2017

Jul 07, 2017

Jul 14, 2017

Jul 21, 2017

Jul 28, 2017

Aug 04, 2017


Mon: Closed; Tue-Wed:10:00am - 6:00pm; Thur: 10:00am - 9:00pm; Fri, Sat, Sun: 10:00am - 6:00pm

Judith Leiber: Crafting a New York Story

Judith Leiber spent sixty-five years in the handbag industry, from an apprentice in Budapest to the owner of an internationally renowned handbag company based in New York City. As the only female pattern-maker, and with the unusual ability to make a handbag from start to finish, Leiber brought a distinctly European training and skill set to the United States, where handbags were made with assembly-line skill division. This allowed her not only to succeed as a designer, but also to revolutionize the meaning of handbag craftsmanship for the American consumer.

Judith Leiber: Crafting a New York Story tells the tale of this illustrious craftswoman, designer, and businesswoman. The exhibition includes handbags that encompass the history of her eponymous company, which Leiber founded in 1963 at the age of forty-two, through 2004, when she designed her last handbag. Although biographical in nature, the exhibition also explores the gendered significance of the handbag in twentieth-century Western culture, and the centrality of immigrant entrepreneurship in the fabric of New York.