The public is invited to view an exhibit of Rudy Rotter works titled “Women” in the University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc Founders Hall Art Gallery through October 4. Berel Lutsky, associate professor of art at UW-Manitowoc will deliver a gallery talk on Wednesday, September 25 at 5:00 p.m.
In spring of 2011, after ten years of heroic efforts to preserve the studio and the astounding collection of the late Rudy Rotter, the Rudy Rotter Museum of Sculpture was forced to close, and the collection of nearly 17,000 pieces of work dispersed to different locations. UW-Manitowoc was fortunate to be granted a portion of the work from his estate – and accordingly, nearly fifty sculptural pieces and several hundred drawings and other works on paper now reside on campus.
“Women” is the third of what will be a series of exhibits of Rudy Rotter’s art work in the Founders Hall Gallery at UW-Manitowoc. The work chosen for this exhibit all have women as the subject and reflect Rotter’s well cultivated sense of whimsy and willingness to address archetypical forms in uncommon ways. The work respectfully and lovingly considers women as heroic, seductive, nurturing, contemplative, domineering, and mysterious. While some of Rotter’s women are archetypes, appearing (and reappearing) as almost generic in their femininity, others veer towards portraiture, not so much as traditional likenesses as much as their more specific psychological or emotional content.
Five pieces of sculpture in this exhibition, (one in plaster, and four in wood) have been generously loaned by Karen Rotter and the estate of Rudy Rotter. The balance of the work chosen is from the UW-Manitowoc collection. This work is primarily from his later years.
Rudy Rotter (1913-2001) was born in Milwaukee and was a dentist and an artist in Manitowoc until his retirement in 1975 when he turned full time to making art. While mostly “self-taught,” it is difficult to categorize his practice as “naïve.” He studied relentlessly, and was fully aware and knowledgeable about art and its traditions. He also was aware of the changes afoot in art world which began in earnest in the 1970’s. This awareness can be seen to be a major factor in his later work. Rotter worked steadily and prolifically until his death in 2001. His work can be found in galleries in Milwaukee, New York and recently San Francisco. The John Michael Kohler Art Center and the Rahr-West Museum of Art both have his work in their collections. In Milwaukee he is represented by the Portrait Society Gallery. He was featured as part of the Perspective Series at the Kohler in 1997 in Rudy Rotter: Mahogany to Mink, and his work continues to be shown and appreciated both regionally and nationally.
The UW-Manitowoc Founders Hall Gallery is open to the public weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There is no admission cost. Call 920-683-4735 for more information.
UW-Manitowoc is featuring an exhibit of Rudy Rotter works in its Founders Hall Art Gallery through October 4. The exhibit, titled “Women,” all have women as the subject and reflect Rotter’s well cultivated sense of whimsy and willingness to address archetypical forms in uncommon ways. A gallery talk will be delivered on September 25 at 5:00 pm by Berel Lutsky, associate professor of art. The exhibit is free and open to the public.