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Racine, WI    July 7, 2014

RAM Presents In-Depth:

Jeweler and Metalsmith 

Robert W. Ebendorf


I make no distinction about materials. They can be gold, snakeskin, tin foil, rusty metal. They all have beauty and I want to dance with them.

- Robert W. Ebendorf

Open July 13, 2014 through January 18, 2015, Racine Art Museum (RAM) exhibition The Life and Times of Robert W. Ebendorf: Jeweler and Metalsmith presents an in-depth look at this innovative and influential contemporary metalsmith. Described as a "cornucopia" of information, Robert W. Ebendorf (1938 - ) has spent 50 years creating jewelry, assemblages, and hollowware from metal and found objects. This Collections Focus series solo exhibition at RAM offers more than 100 works that represent almost five decades of his creativity. Based on a core group of pieces from RAM's holdings, the show also features examples borrowed from the artist and private lenders.

Robert W. EbendorfRam It, 2014

Pearl, found objects, glass beads, and copper

4 x 3 3/8 x 3/4 inches

Racine Art Museum, Gift of the Artist in

Honor of John Satterfield and Linda Darty

Photography: Tom Van Eynde

Ebendorf has long been at the forefront of contemporary art jewelry. Using found objects, as well as non-precious materials and precious metals to create his work, he combines a vast knowledge of metalsmithing techniques with the capacity to see the beauty in the unexpected. The result is utterly compelling adornment and objects such as RAM's Off the Street, From the Beach neckpiece, which includes pink plastic spoons, plant identification tags, and other miscellany found while Ebendorf walked with his daughter on the beach and to school.


A Fulbright Scholar, Tiffany Foundation Grant Award winner, and founding member of the Society for North American Goldsmiths (SNAG), Ebendorf's work is represented in museums around the world. He has made his mark on contemporary craft not only as an artist, but also as educator, organizer, mentor, and collector. 


Robert W. Ebendorf: The Work in Depth

Available Soon

Accompanying the exhibition, Robert W. Ebendorf: The Work in Depth, is a hardcover book that explores the artist's work and philosophy in depth, as seen through the collection of the Racine Art Museum (RAM). With two essays and an interview with the artist, as well as over 35 images, the publication includes images of Ebendorf's work from RAM's collection, as well as pieces on loan from significant private collectors, Ron Porter and Joe Price. The 52-page book will be available online for $30 plus shipping or by calling the RAM Museum Store at 262.638.8200.


Special Media Tour at the Racine Art Museum

Monday, July 14

Members of the media are invited to preview 

The Life and Times of Robert W. Ebendorf: Jeweler and Metalsmith at 9:30 am on Monday, June 14. Go behind-the-scenes with Lena Vigna, RAM Curator of Exhibitions to learn more about the work of this critical figure in contemporary jewelry and metalsmithing. Ebendorf is as skilled at creating a vibrant and powerful community of makers and supporters as he is at making innovative and provocative work.


The Life and Times of Robert W. Ebendorf: Jeweler and Metalsmith

is made possible at Racine Art Museum by:  Platinum Sponsors - Karen Johnson Boyd and William B. Boyd, SC Johnson, Windgate Charitable Foundation; Diamond Sponsor - Sam and Gene Johnson Fund; Gold Sponsors - East Carolina University - School of Art & Design, Herzfeld Foundation, Johnson Bank, Racine United Arts Fund; Silver Sponsors - Cotsen Foundation for Academic Research, Elwood Corporation, Helen Bader Foundation, Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation, W.T. Walker Group, Inc., Wisconsin Arts Board; Bronze Sponsors - 88NINE Radio Milwaukee, CNH Industrial, Craft in America PBS Series, E.C. Styberg Foundation, Inc., Educators Credit Union, The Garvey Group, In Sink Erator, Miracle on Canal Street, The Norbell Foundation, Perimeter Gallery, Chicago, Real Racine, Robert W. Baird Foundation, Ruud Family Foundation, Carol C. Saunders


Donors of Robert W. Ebendorf Works include: Dale and Doug Anderson, Mr. and Mrs. Brent Best, Teri Blond, Karen Johnson Boyd, Gail M Brown, David and Jacqueline Charak, Robert W. Ebedorf and Aleta Braun, Lisa Englander and Bruce W. Pepich, John J. Grant, Dorothy Haas, Charlotte Heil, Arlene Mann in Honor of Robert L. Mann, The Porter*Price Collection, Veronica D. Regas Endowment Fund


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.

More Information

Special Media Tour
at Racine Art Museum
Monday, July 14
9:30 am

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