Honoring Karen Johnson Boyd: Art Jewelry/Sculpture to Wear

June 24, 2018 - February 3, 2019

Karen Johnson Boyd did not just collect art, she wore it. While her attention to ceramics and fiber is well-documented, her notice of and appreciation for contemporary art jewelry deserves further exploration as well. Mrs. Boyd’s admiration encompassed artists who used both precious and non-precious materials such as found objects, wood, shell, titanium, and crystals. Similar to her other collecting areas of interest, she would make intuitive decisions and acquire what appealed to her. While she did not wear everything in equal measure, she was often adorned, favoring brooches over other forms of jewelry. 

Mrs. Boyd’s gifts to RAM include an enamel and mother-of-pearl necklace and earring set by landmark jeweler, Earl Pardon; glass bead neckpieces by recent MacArthur Fellowship award winner Joyce Scott; and a colorful acrylic brooch by British jeweler, Peter Chang. 

Interested in collecting nationally and internationally, Mrs. Boyd often turned her attention to artists that were based close to home also. She collected Wisconsin metalsmiths and jewelers Ken Loeber and Eleanor Moty in such depth that they are being shown in the large exhibition, Honoring Karen Johnson Boyd: Collecting In-Depth at Home and at RAM. Mrs. Boyd’s advocacy of Loeber’s work in particular resulted in her establishment of an archive for the artist at RAM. Currently, Loeber is documented by 49 examples, including brooches, neckpieces, serving ware, and puzzle boxes representing his career path from 1970 through 2013. 

MORE ABOUT EXHIBITION
Exhibition Notes
Press Room

ARTISTS IN THE EXHIBITION
Deborah Aguado, Carolyn Morris Bach, Jamie Bennett, Liv Blåvarp, Flora Book, Irena Brynner, Jessica Calderwood, Peter Chang, Sharon Church, Betty Cooke, Giovanni Corvaja, Robert W. Ebendorf, Eva Eisler, Fred Fenster, Arline Fisch, William Harper, Elizabeth Holder, Mary Lee Hu, Rena Koopman, Shana Kroiz, Rebekah Laskin, Thomas Mann, Ted Noten, Harold O’Connor, Gina Pankowski, Earl Pardon, Francesco Pavan, Ronald Hayes Pearson, Lee Barnes Peck, Linda Kindler Priest, Robin Quigley, Wendy Ramshaw, Susan Rezac, Joyce Scott, Helen Shirk, Kiff Slemmons, Art Smith, Didi Suydam, Alan Burton Thompson, Margaret Thurman, Susan Wise, J. Fred Woell, and Marci Zelmanoff

Irena Brynner
Patterned (Neckpiece), ca. 1970
18K-gold
1/2 x 5 3/8 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Sharon Church
Beaded Collar, 1989
Oxidized sterling silver and glass beads
9 3/4 x 9 x 3/4 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Giovanni Corvaja
Brooch, 1996
18k-gold
1/2 x 2 1/2 inches diameter
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
William Harper
Albino III (Brooch), 1978
14k-gold, 24k-gold, enamel, pearl, sterling silver, quartz, and moonstone
4 3/8 x 3 1/8 x 3/4 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Rena Koopman
Cuff, 1991
Sterling silver, 18k-gold, and 22k-gold
1 3/4 x 2 1/2 x 1 13/16 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Ted Noten
Neckpiece, 1994
14k-gold, iron, monofilament, paper, glass, and sterling silver
13 5/8 x 7 x 1/4 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine
Ronald Hayes Pearson
Matching Curves Neckband, ca. 1970

Sterling silver, edition 5/100
4 1/2 x 5 3/8 x 3/8 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd
Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine

 

Honoring Karen Johnson Boyd: Art Jewelry/Sculpture to Wear is made possible by:

Platinum Sponsors
Friends of Fiber Art International

Windgate Charitable Foundation

Diamond Sponsors
Tom and Irene Creecy
Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation

Gold Sponsors
David Flegel
Richard and Diane Ruffo
Silver Sponsors
Evinrude Outboard Motors
Lucy Feller
Racine County
Bill and Mary Walker
Bronze Sponsors
John Cram and Matt Chambers
David and Ellen Easley
Fredrick and Deborah Ganaway
William Guenther
Dorothy MacVicar
The Norbell Foundation
Janna and Dr. Edward Waldeck
Walmart