RACINE – ‘In the Round: Vessels and Sculpture from RAM’s Collection’ will open on Wednesday, January 26 at the Racine Art Museum, 441 Main St. It will feature works from the museum’s permanent collection – made mostly of ceramic and glass – that provide compelling, layered narratives and engaging designs when viewed from more than one side. This exhibition will be on view until July 30.
By its very definition, sculpture is multi-faceted and meant to be viewed from different angles. Even when not placed so as to be seen from all sides, the sculpture is still the articulation of an idea on several planes, not a flat representation. In the Round plays with this idea by presenting works of art that are best understood when viewed from multiple angles – pieces whose stories and designs unfold as the viewer actively engages in the exploration of all.
Pursuing a desire to investigate ideas, stories, and patterns in sculptural form, many included artists encourage prolonged contemplation of works whose sides and backs are as integral to the whole as their facades. Indeed, for some rooms, there may not be an obvious visual entry or exit point. Metaphorically, these works highlight the value of considering multiple viewpoints.
Several pieces are based on functional vessels – teapots, vases and bowls – but few are intended for actual use. Those that do not refer to functional forms eliminate questions of practicality and further reinforce the status of these objects as a means of generating thought.
Several works from In the Round, including vessels by Kevin Snipes and potters from the Mexican town of Mata Ortiz, are new to RAM’s collection and make their public debut in this exhibition.
The Racine art museum is open from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. from Wednesday to Saturday. Admission is $7, or $5 for seniors 62 and older and students. For more information, visit ramart.org.
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