Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum
Press Release

House of Risk: An Immersive and Transformational Installation by Artists Sylvie Rosenthal and Vanessa Diaz opens October 18, 2018

Come witness this historic mansion transformed!

By - Oct 11th, 2018 12:42 pm

Milwaukee, WIOctober 10, 2018 – The Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum opens House of Risk on October 18, 2018 featuring a collaborative installation by artists Sylvie Rosenthal (Madison, WI) and Vanessa Diaz (Miami, FL). The artists reference the family history of the Villa Terrace through a lens of the fantastical in response to a conversation with Roger Smith, a descendant who experienced the Villa Terrace as a child. Come witness this historic mansion transformed!

Through a mixture of handmade, found and assembled objects that act as metaphors for the intersecting trajectories of natural history, invention, time, global trade and technology, their work gestures towards both histories and futures. Impossible (yet probable) hybrid objects such as a hand-carved wooden snake that has seemingly swallowed a teapot, or a cut-apart and reassembled historic settee transform the Villa Terrace’s domestic space into a place of discovery and potential.

House of Risk is curated by the museum’s Senior Curator Shana McCaw with assistance from Jenille Junco. The exhibition is co-sponsored by the Chipstone Foundation. “We’re excited to partner with the Chipstone Foundation to bring the work of these artists together, to create an exhibition in dialog with the beauty of the Villa Terrace, and to explore the questions it raises with those who experience it,” says McCaw.

Opening currently with House of Risk is Play (things), an architectural exhibition in conjunction with the 2018 Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) fall conference being held in Milwaukee October 11–13, 2018. The conference title is “Play with the Rules,” and Play (things) explores how rules relate to the production of architecture. Architecture is continually confronted with a myriad of constraints: budget, site, program, codes, schedule, structure, clients, accreditation and so on. This exhibition raises questions such as: How can these parameters be mobilized to help rethink the role of rules in architecture? Can rules be a form of play? Rather than limiting what we can do, how might rules be rewritten to generate new possibilities for architectural production?

The exhibition features a collection of pavilion proposals addressing these constraints by a variety of forward-thinking designers from across the nation who have critically re-examined the role of the pavilion in contemporary architectural discourse.

Exhibition Events
Opening Party | Artist Talk
Thursday, October 18, 2018
Doors open at 4:30 p.m.
Artist talk 5:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Opening party 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Artist Talk | Exhibiting artists Sylvie Rosenthal and Vanessa Diaz will give a slide talk about their past work, the evolution of their project House of Risk at Villa Terrace, and the intricacies of a long-distance collaboration.

Children’s Workshop | Charm Necklaces as Talisman
December 28, 2018 | Drop in anytime between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m.
Suggested materials donation $5 per family

Join exhibiting artist Sylvie Rosenthal in creating a giant charm necklace as a talisman of our hopes and dreams for the future! This hands-on workshop will give folks of all ages a chance to create a drawing on a piece of wood that will be cut on a bandsaw by the artist and then decorated. Witness an idea become an object!

Open to kids ages 6 through 12 and their parents as “studio assistants.”
Timed to occur over Milwaukee Public Schools’ winter break.

Walk through the exhibition with a curator!
October 25, 6:00 p.m.
November 7, 1:00 p.m. | Admission free for Milwaukee County residents
November 29, 6:00 p.m.
December 5 1:00 p.m. | Admission free for Milwaukee County residents

About the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum
Overlooking Lake Michigan, the Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum is an Italian Renaissance-style villa designed and built by architect David Adler in 1923 as the residence of Lloyd Smith of the A.O. Smith Corporation, his wife Agnes and their family. The villa’s courtyards, terraces, and Renaissance garden flowing down to the lake make it unique to Milwaukee. The permanent collection features fine and decorative arts from the 15th through the 18th centuries and the Cyril Colnik collection and archives, with many excellent examples of Colnik’s wrought-iron masterpieces. Curated exhibitions are mounted several times each year along with a variety of arts programming.

General Museum Information
Hours: Wednesday, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m., Thursday 1:00 to 8:00 p.m., Friday through Sunday, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Admission: $7/adult, $5/student & senior (62+), free for museum members, children 12 & under and active military. Group tours are available for ten or more people.

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