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Press Release                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Racine, WI     May 19, 2010
Insects and Invaders Arrive at the Racine Art Museum

Annette Corcoran, Painted Bunting, 1986
Racine Art Museum, the Donna Moog Teapot Collection
Photography: Michael Tropea, Chicago, IL
Corcoran Bunting
For human beings, insects can be compelling, frustrating and awe-inspiring creatures, as well as objects of study and contemplation.  Open June 13 through October 17, 2010, Insects and Invaders in RAM's Collection features Racine Art Museum collection pieces that shine a spotlight not only on insects-whether in representational or abstract form-but also on some of those animals that are the necessary "invaders" in their lives, such as birds, frogs and others on the food chain.
Insects are significant players in the world's ecosystems and are the food source for numerous animals. In many cultures, insect imagery carries symbolic meaning. For example, in China, the grasshopper is connected to ideas of longevity, happiness and good luck, among other attributes. The scorpion is associated with healing and protection in Egypt, Tibet and Africa. Selections from RAM's glass, ceramics and wood collections underscore the connectedness of all creatures on the planet, especially when considered in conjunction with the other exhibitions currently on view. These artworks-not just "portraits" but also narrative scenes and abstract interpretations-highlight how artists use insects and other animals as a starting point for investigating the relationship between human beings and the natural world. In addition, they reveal how nature has served as inspiration and motivation for pattern, form and color.
Unlike many museums that keep works from their permanent collections on constant display, the Racine Art Museum changes all of its exhibition galleries three times each year. The museum selects from its holdings of over 5,000 objects to create specific thematic exhibitions. Oftentimes, as with Insects and Invaders, RAM draws on its major exhibitions to suggest topics for permanent collection shows that run simultaneously at the museum.
The theme for this RAM exhibition is inspired by All the Buzz: Insects Invade RAM, an exciting collection of exhibits and programs with an artistic focus on insects. All the Buzz includes nationally respected artists Catherine Chalmers, Jennifer Angus and JoAnna Poehlmann. For more information about these exhibitions, events and classes, visit www.ramart.org.
The presentation of this exhibition at the Racine Art Museum was made possible by: Presenting Sponsors - Karen Johnson Boyd and William B. Boyd, RAM Society Members, S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., The Hearst Foundation, Inc. and Windgate Charitable Foundation; Gold Sponsors - Racine United Arts Fund, The Richard and Ethel Herzfeld Foundation, and Wisconsin Arts Board; Silver Sponsors - Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation and Real Racine; Bronze Sponsors - E. C. Styberg Foundation, Inc., In Sink Erator, Midwest Contemporary Glass Art Group, and Target.

Together, the two campuses of the Racine Art Museum, RAM in downtown Racine at 441 Main Street and the Charles A. Wustum Museum of Fine Arts at 2519 Northwestern Avenue, seek to elevate the stature of contemporary crafts to that of fine art by exhibiting significant works in craft media with painting, sculpture and photography, while providing outstanding educational art programming.

Docent led contemporary craft and architectural tours of the museums are available. Both campuses of the Racine Art Museum, are open to the public Tuesday - Saturday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, and are closed Mondays, Federal holidays and Easter. RAM is open Sunday Noon - 5:00 pm, while Wustum is closed Sundays. An admission fee of $5 for adults, with reduced fees for students and seniors, applies at RAM. Admission to Wustum is free. Members are always admitted without charge to either campus.

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Laura Gillespie
RAM Marketing Assistant
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