This October, the Rahr-West Art Museum is pleased to present two exhibits where the art of our collection has inspired more art: The 49th Annual Art of Tablesettings exhibit and Inspired by the Museum Collection: Utility Boxes in Manitowoc.
The Art of Tablesettings, opening October 6, 2023, features table designs created by community designers that are inspired by a work of art. Originally this exhibit featured traditional tablesettings of fine china & crystal, but over the years it has taken on a life of its own. It’s not unusual to find tin plates or coconut shells in place of china & crystal; and paint pails or a picnic blanket used as the table. The possibilities are endless; limited only by the imagination of the designers.
The Inspired by the Museum Collection: Utility Boxes in Manitowoc exhibit features art that inspired the designs of utility boxes in Manitowoc. In 2021 and 2022 the Rahr-West Art Museum Public Arts Committee collaborated with Manitowoc Public Utilities to have local artists paint utility boxes with designs inspired by works in the Museum’s collection. The focus for the project began with the beautification of downtown Manitowoc and expanded to the Public Schools in 2022. From zebras to portraits, this exhibit features the all of the pieces from the Rahr-West Art Museum collection that served as inspiration for the boxes you can find around town.
Zebra by Victor Vasarely, a print from the Rahr-West Art Museum collection was inspiration for a tablesetting and a utility box! (1991.005.071, Gift of Mrs. John D. West)