Precedents: Past meets Present in Contemporary Glass and Clay

Racine Art Museum

Feb. 9, 2024 - Sep. 24, 2022

441 Main Street
Racine, 53403
PHONE 262.638.8300

Opening February 9, 2022 at the Racine Art Museum (RAM), Precedents: Past meets Present in Contemporary Glass and Clay will offer new contexts for understanding how motifs and decorations resurface regularly through generations, how much variety is possible within the dynamic of objects made in a certain material of relative size, and how artists might look at each other’s work for inspiration. This exhibition will be on display at the downtown Racine museum through September 24, 2022.

Artists gather influences from an almost endless variety of sources including cultural, social, and historical people, places, and ideas, as well as personal experiences and perspectives, and even the work of other artists and creatives. Whether or not an individual contemporary artist is directly inspired by an object or image from the past, it can be useful to compare and contrast recent creations with older similar examples.

While RAM’s permanent collection contains a wide array of art media, Precedents was specifically spurred by the recent acquisition of numerous nineteenth-century glass goblets and mid-twentieth-century ceramic vessels. A selection of contemporary goblets—part of a gift to RAM from Alan and Barbara Boroff and the Kohler Foundation, Inc. of more than 100 works from various artists—will be paired with historic pieces. The goblets of Fritz Dreisbach and James Minson, to name just two, reflect contemporary approaches that incorporate tradition yet also expand upon it. Small-scale ceramic vases and bowls from early-twentieth-century producers—such as Van Briggle Pottery and Weller Pottery—will be paired with works from later in the century. These contemporary pieces will include brilliantly-colored Feelies from Rose Cabat and a patterned vessel by Acoma Pueblo maker, Margaret Ascencio.

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