Zoe Morrow
Folded Bill Basket, 1989
Shredded currency
10 x 10 x 6 1/2 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Gabriel, Jr.
Photography: Jarvis Lawson

Zero Waste: Objects

January 31 – October 12, 2024
at Racine Art Museum

The incorporation of found, “non-art” materials into artworks is generally regarded as a modern approach, dating to the early 1900s. The artist may alter these objects for use in their work, but the original appearance is often retained to some degree to construct layers of meaning. As the home of North America’s largest contemporary craft collection, RAM also houses numerous works created from found materials—candy, clothespins, dollar bills, postcards, tools, zippers, and more.

Artists gravitate towards using found objects for numerous reasons: the objects may suggest another time or space; encourage a reconsideration of something familiar; reflect concerns with consumption and the environmental effects of mass production; and/or draw on personal, historical, political, social, or pop culture references.

Drawn entirely from RAM’s collection, this exhibition—and the one that replaces it in the fall—highlights artists that repurpose materials originally intended for a use other than art. The exhibitions support RAM’s Zero Waste Art Initiative, an ongoing and multi-faceted project encouraging reconsideration of consumption habits and creative solutions for reuse. As outlined by RAM’s Education Department, this initiative “is working to establish partnerships with local businesses and manufacturing plants to reduce their waste and keep it out of landfills by turning these materials into educational, eco-art.”

More About the Exhibition

Exhibition Notes (PDF)

Press Room

Artists in the Exhibition

Jerry Bleem, Susie Colquitt, Tara K. Daly, Linda Dolack, Robert W. Ebendorf, John J. Grant, Kathleen Holmes, Judith Hoyt, Janice Lowry, Wendy Maruyama, Zoe Morrow, Judy Mulford, Noa Nadir, Joy Raskin, Takako Saito, Norman Sherfield, Karyl Sisson, Kiff Slemmons, Lenore Tawney, Billie Jean Theide, Josette Urso, Ellen Wieske, David Williamson, and Roberta Williamson

Zero Waste: Objects

January 31 – October 12, 2024
at Racine Art Museum
Zoe Morrow
Folded Bill Basket, 1989
Shredded currency
10 x 10 x 6 1/2 inches
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Gabriel, Jr.
Photography: Jarvis Lawson

The incorporation of found, “non-art” materials into artworks is generally regarded as a modern approach, dating to the early 1900s. The artist may alter these objects for use in their work, but the original appearance is often retained to some degree to construct layers of meaning. As the home of North America’s largest contemporary craft collection, RAM also houses numerous works created from found materials—candy, clothespins, dollar bills, postcards, tools, zippers, and more.

Artists gravitate towards using found objects for numerous reasons: the objects may suggest another time or space; encourage a reconsideration of something familiar; reflect concerns with consumption and the environmental effects of mass production; and/or draw on personal, historical, political, social, or pop culture references.

Drawn entirely from RAM’s collection, this exhibition—and the one that replaces it in the fall—highlights artists that repurpose materials originally intended for a use other than art. The exhibitions support RAM’s Zero Waste Art Initiative, an ongoing and multi-faceted project encouraging reconsideration of consumption habits and creative solutions for reuse. As outlined by RAM’s Education Department, this initiative “is working to establish partnerships with local businesses and manufacturing plants to reduce their waste and keep it out of landfills by turning these materials into educational, eco-art.”

More About the Exhibition

Exhibition Notes (PDF)

Press Room

Artists in the Exhibition

Jerry Bleem, Susie Colquitt, Tara K. Daly, Linda Dolack, Robert W. Ebendorf, John J. Grant, Kathleen Holmes, Judith Hoyt, Janice Lowry, Wendy Maruyama, Zoe Morrow, Judy Mulford, Noa Nadir, Joy Raskin, Takako Saito, Norman Sherfield, Karyl Sisson, Kiff Slemmons, Lenore Tawney, Billie Jean Theide, Josette Urso, Ellen Wieske, David Williamson, and Roberta Williamson

Sample of Work in the Exhibition

Click/tap an image for more information

Exhibitions at RAM are made possible by:

Platinum Sponsors

The Estate of Karen Johnson Boyd
David Charak
Judith and David Flegel Fund
Ron and Judith Isaacs
Nicholas and Nancy Kurten
Racine Community Foundation logo
Windgate Foundation

Diamond Sponsors

City of Racine’s Grow Racine Grant
Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation
Ruffo Family Foundation
Ruth Arts Foundation

Gold Sponsors

Anonymous
Tom and Irene Creecy
Richard and Patricia Ehlert
Trio Foundation of St. Louis
W.T. Walker Group, Inc.
Wisconsin Arts Board

Silver Sponsors

Anonymous
Baird
Beta Diagnostic Labs
A.C. Buhler Family
Lucy G. Feller
Ben and Dawn Flegel
Jim Harris
Sharon and Tom Harty
Horizon Retail Construction, Inc.
Lise Iwon
J. Jeffers & Co.
Johnson Financial Group
Dorothy MacVicar
Jan Serr and John Shannon

Bronze Sponsors

Ellen and Joseph Albrecht
Andis Foundation
Susan Boland
Virginia Buhler
Dave’s Wine Garage
Educators Credit Union
Express Employment Professionals
Bill and Debbie Keland
Susan Manalli
Jean and Alex Mandli, Jr.
The Prairie School
Cathy Stanghellin
Twin Disc, Inc.

Love Art?  You’ll Love RAM!

The mission of the Racine Art Museum is to exhibit, collect, preserve, and educate in the contemporary visual arts. Stay up-to-date about special events as well as support the mission of the largest contemporary craft collection in America: