RACINE — In a contemporary context, glass goblets may seem like a rarified object — one associated with historical ceremonies or formal banquets. But in the fine craft field, glass goblets are akin to ceramic teapots in that they are functional forms that makers explore either as exercises in technique and style or as singular forms that reflect an idea or serve a purpose.
Open through July 21, 2019, at the Racine Art Museum, 441 Main St., “Raise Your Glass (Goblets): Recent Acquisitions from Alan and Barbara Boroff and the Kohler Foundation Inc.” debuts more than 100 glass goblets donated to RAM by Alan and Barbara Boroff and the Kohler Foundation Inc.
A goblet is simply defined as a drinking glass with a foot or stem — also often noted as not having a functional handle or handles (but individual designs sometimes challenge this). Synonyms such as mug and stein do not evoke the same shape while a chalice suggests something more ceremonial or formal. Styles and sizes of goblets have been dependent on use, taste and technical concerns.
This Windows on Fifth Gallery exhibition offers examples by a wide range of contemporary glass artists — those that focus on creating glass vessels specifically and those who typically use glass in their work in other ways but have tried their hand at the goblet form. Likewise, a variety of styles, techniques and sizes are represented. Artists whose works are featured include Lucio Bubacco, Fritz Dreisbach, Shane Fero, Katherine Gray, Richard Jolley, James Minson, Michael J. Schunke and Charles Savoie.
This important recent gift to RAM reflects the passionate collecting of Alan (1932-2016) and Barbara Boroff who acquired more than 650 glass goblets before sharing them with public institutions. The Boroffs have collected from the 1960s to the present, including multiple pieces from the same artist made at different times.
The Racine Art Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $7 for adults, and $5 for seniors 62 and older and students. There is no charge for ages 11 and younger.