Museum Of Wisconsin Art: Presents Beth Lipman: Precarious Possessions

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February 7–April 13, 2014

(WEST BEND, WI) Making its Wisconsin debut, the Museum of Wisconsin Art (MOWA) is proud to present Beth Lipman: Precarious Possessions, on view February 7–April 13, 2014. An opening reception will take place Thursday, February 6, 5:00–8:00.

Featured in MOWA’s One Gallery, this exhibition showcases Beth Lipman’s latest and most extravagant work to date: Sideboard with Blue China. We live in a society that bedevils us with images and advertisements to buy and consume more than we need, more than we might even want. We are bombarded with print and online publications and television programs that “suggest” what our homes and their interiors should look like. Lipman, one of the preeminent artists working in glass today, takes the idea of extreme consumption to its ultimate expression with this tour-de-force of contemporary glass sculpture.

Measuring nearly 25’ wide and 9’ high, and made almost entirely of glass, Sideboard with Blue China is a stunning, large-scale homage to an ultra-extravagant, historic sideboard from 1853 by noted designers Bulkley and Herter. Inspired by the Victorian predilection for displaying wealth and taste within the home, and all too aware that little has changed in the ensuing 170 years, with this piece Lipman raises issues of growth and decay, wants versus needs, and how our possessions define us.

“Wisconsin should be proud to have such an accomplished artist working within the state, but with an increasingly national reputation,” says Laurie Winters, MOWA Executive Director | CEO. “Her work continues to push boundaries, explore ideas, and make viewers think, not just about glass as a medium, but as a vehicle for examining our lives and possessions.”

Born in Philadelphia, Lipman earned a B.F.A in glass and fibers from Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia. She moved to Wisconsin in 2005 to direct the John Michael Kohler Arts Center Arts/Industry Residency Program after being a resident there herself in 2003. Lipman currently lives and works in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. Her work has been exhibited world-wide, including such institutions as the Museum of Glass (Washington), the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington DC), and Gustavsbers Konsthall (Sweden), among others. Numerous museums have acquired her work, including the Brooklyn Museum of Art (New York), the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington DC), and the Corning Museum of Glass (New York). She is represented by Claire Oliver Gallery in New York, and Cade Tompkins Projects in Rhode Island.

Precarious Possessions was organized in collaboration with Claire Oliver Gallery in New York. After MOWA, Sideboard with Blue China will travel to the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida.