BreakThroughColour

COLOUR 'SPECTRUM' AT RAM

Tracy HolmesComment
"Color is both a simple and complex concept — associated with emotions, symbols, and thoughts. Human beings learn about color at a young age and it becomes familiar. Still, the use of it as an artistic or design choice is layered and sometimes subjective."

So begins the description of Spectrum: Contemporary Artists in Color at the Racine Art Museum in Racine, Wisconsin, January 31 through July 10, 2016.

'Spectrum' features the works of 30 artists, including this piece by my partner, Dan Cormier:

Dan Cormier, Natalia Necklace, 2007 1″ – 1 1/2″ beads, polymer, buna cord, embedded metal clasp   |   part of the permanent collection of Racine Art Museum

Dan Cormier, Natalia Necklace, 2007
1″ – 1 1/2″ beads, polymer, buna cord, embedded metal clasp   |   part of the permanent collection of Racine Art Museum

The 'Natalia Necklace' was made with polymer clay, one of the most inherently colourful art materials. First popular in the 1960s as a modelling compound for hobbyists and doll makers, it has only recently earned its place as an art medium for the 21st Century, alongside more traditional art craft media that have been around for many more hundreds of years, like glass, metal, wood, fibre, and ceramics.

Given its crafty origins, it is significant that museums like RAM now include polymer in their permanent collections, thanks to both its evolution in the hands of professional artists, and the dedication of passionate advocates like artist-collector Elise Winters. Rachel Carren puts her spin on 'Spectrum' in an insightful polymer-focused post as the capable curator at the helm of Winters' visionary online resource, 'Polymer Art Archive'.

Congratulations to the other polymer pioneers, Jeff Dever, Lindly Haunani, and Pier Voulkos for their part in this colour showcase.

If you're anywhere near this wonderful museum venue in the coming months, be sure to stop by and get a hit of colour up close and in person. 'Spectrum' runs until July 10, 2016.