Racine, WI     September 5, 2013

Racine Art Museum Debuts Collection Pieces by One of Wisconsin's Most Significant Artists


Racine Art Museum proudly presents Collection Focus: John Wilde, open October 6, 2013 through January 12, 2014. This exhibition combines over 30 works from the permanent collection, many recently gifted by Karen Johnson Boyd, with works on loan from other significant area collectors and private institutions, including Dr. and Mrs. Peter Gardetto and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Not only does this exhibition highlight RAM's noteworthy holdings of Wilde's work, it underscores the richness of the artistically minded community in the region. Most importantly, it serves to reinforce Wilde's role as a prolific and accomplished artist.

John Wilde, From My Garden (Archimboldi), 1966, Oil on wood
Racine Art Museum, Gift of Karen Johnson Boyd

Photography: Jon Bolton, Racine

Described as "one of the best known artists from Wisconsin in contemporary times," John Wilde (1919-2006) combined his interest in historical and modern painting with carefully detailed drawing to create fantastical still lives, dream-like landscapes, and self-portraits. Wilde's subjects were bountiful nature, the human form, and the human condition-his training in art history is reflected in both his style and the content of his work.


Wilde taught at University of Wisconsin-Madison for over 30 years and is considered one of the most influential art professors of his generation. Along with fellow like-minded artists from the region, he was dubbed a "Magical Realist" for images that merge realistic representations and otherworldly scenarios. This group of artists, more highly regarded now than when they were alive, created narrative works that were an alternative to much of the abstract art that dominated the scene in the mid-century, post-World War II United States.


Wilde's work can be found in major collections across the country including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis.


This exhibition is made possible in part by: Presenting Sponsors - Karen Johnson Boyd and William B. Boyd; Emile H. Mathis II Estate, in Memory of his Parents: Emil H. and Anna T. Mathis; SC Johnson; Windgate Charitable Foundation; Gold Sponsors - National Endowment for the Arts; Racine United Arts Fund; Silver Sponsors - Elwood Corporation; Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation; Racine Community Foundation; W.T. Walker Group, Inc.; Wisconsin Arts Board; Bronze Sponsors - The A.C. Buhler Family; CNHAmerica LLC; Corner House; Craft in America PBS Series; E.C. Styberg Foundation, Inc.; Educators Credit Union; In Sink Erator; The Norbell Foundation; Perimeter Gallery, Chicago; Real Racine; Robert W. Baird & Co.; Runzheimer Foundation; Ruud Family Foundation; Carol C. Saunders.


Donors of artwork featured in Collection Focus: John Wilde include: Karen Johnson Boyd, Warrington Colescott and Frances Myers, and Dr. Peter and Helga Gardetto.


RAM at 10 | Growing America's Craft Collection
This year marks the Racine Art Museum's 10th Anniversary in Downtown Racine. Visitors are invited to discover stunning exhibitions that shine a light on RAM's achievements over the past decade and predict an even brighter future.

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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