Featured Acquisition: Contemporary Glass from Donald and Carol Wiiken

July 7 - October 26, 2014

The Racine Art Museum (RAM) is pleased to debut a grouping of four glass sculptures created in the 1980s and 1990s by Dale Chihuly, Harvey K. Littleton, and Joel Philip Myers. RAM thanks long-term donors Donald and Carol Wiiken for these four sculptures, which join 57 other glass pieces they have contributed through out the years. The Wiikens have been presenting the museum with gifts from their personal glass collection on a regular basis since 1994.

RAM's contemporary glass collection begins with examples from the early years of the Studio Glass Movement in the 1960s and continues through the present. Littleton is recognized as a master of this field because of his early explorations that led to the creation of smaller furnaces in which individual artists could work. He is also highly regarded for his long career as a teacher. Bended Combo Form, 1983, is an example of his series of sculptures that investigated the loop form. It joins nine other Littleton works already in RAM's collection from 1969 through 1987.
 
Joel Philip Myers also spent much of his career as a university teacher, balancing teaching with substantial work in his studio. In this gift, Myers is represented by two works, Blue Vessel with Multicolored Shards, 1982, and Kaleidoscope Green, 1991. They join 12 examples of the artist's work already in RAM's collection representing Myers' career from 1972 through 1991. Both works document his experimentations with large vessel forms and ways of decorating their surfaces with collage-like glass inclusions and surface treatments applied to the cooled glass, including the use of acid etching and sandblasting to achieve texture.
 
Soft Cylinder, 1983, by Dale Chihuly joins a number of his works already at RAM. The museum owns 22 examples of his works from 1965 through 2004, including 17 works in glass and five works on paper. The structure of this sculpture suggests a cylindrical form that is slowly collapsing in upon itself. This piece is part of Chihuly's long-term work in depicting cylinders and basket-like forms in states of change and collapse, or in nested groupings.

MORE ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Press Room

Dale Chihuly
Soft Cylinder, 1983
Glass
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Donald and Carol Wiiken
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Joel Philip Myers
Blue Vessel with Multicolored Shards (CFCBHGD-93), 1982
Glass
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Donald and Carol Wiiken
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Joel Philip Myers
Kaleidoscope Green, 1991
Glass
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Donald and Carol Wiiken
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
 

Exhibitions are made possible at Racine Art Museum by: Presenting Sponsors - Karen Johnson Boyd and William B. Boyd, Emile H. Mathis II Estate, in Memory of his Parents: Emil H. and Anna T. Mathis, RAM Society Members, SC Johnson, and Windgate Charitable Foundation.