It’s been 20 years since Nan Roche published “The New Clay,” and polymer clay has come a long way baby. I picked up polymer about the same time as Roche published her book, generally recognized as the first serious assessment of the material in print. There have been a few museum shows in the years since which focused on polymer art. It is largely through the work of Elise Winters that museums have begun to more recently show an interest in collecting the work as documentation of new development in an important medium. Winters, having a substantial collection herself, combined it with those of Nan Roche, Lindly Haunani, and Carol Watkins, and through great diligence has distributed the combined collection to several museums. The Racine Art Museum debuted the first placement in October 2011 with Terra Nova: Polymer Art at the Crossroads.
Necklace by Nancy Banks. Image from polymerartarchive.com
Among Roche’s collection were a number of my beads that went to the Mingei International Museum. They can be seen as part of the New Jewelry in a New Medium show until June 17, 2012.
The show represents the work of 64 artists whose work influenced and was influenced by the birth of this new medium. I’m proud to be included. Here is the full list:
“Dan Adams and Cynthia Toops, Jamey Allen, Kathleen Amt, Deborah M. Anderson, Nancy Banks, Meisha Barbee, Louise Belcher, Shellie Brooks, Donna Carty, Jean Comport, Dan Cormier, Katherine Dewey, Grant Diffendaffer, Marcea Donovan, Dayle Doroshow, Kathleen Dustin, Celie Fago, Janet Farris, Lori Feiss, Steven Ford and David Forlano, Galdieri, Gwen Gibson, Kathy Gregson, Dorothy Greynold, Ruth Ann Grove, Michael Grove, Lindly Haunani, Amelia Helm, Jean Hornberger, Tory Hughes, Joanne Hunot, Marie Johannes, Donna Kato, Kaz Kono, Klew (Karen Lewis), Z. Kripke, Jacqueline Lee Cherie, Sandra Lentz, Christine Leu, Laura (Oakes) Liska, Margaret Maggio, Barbara McGuire, Cheryl Michell, Linda Pederson, Carolyn Potter, Marion Quinn, Lorraine Randecker, Margaret Regan, Nan Roche, the Rouse House (Mary Rouse), Marie Segal, Rudi Sennett, Ileen Shefferman, Sarah Shriver, The Sisters of San Francisco, Liz Tamayo, Jan Twink, Pier Voulkos, Liv and Joy Waters, Andree Weinman, Elise Winters.”