This Phil Patton Show is Too Hot to Handle

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By Alissa Walker Comment

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Just after our Clearview Commitment Ceremony where we’ll be beginning our new polygamous lifestyle with everyone who wrote pieces about new freeway signage prior to last week, a related exhibition will open that features one of our significant others, Phil Patton, and his collection of–what else?–coffee cup lids:

Humble and ephemeral objects, coffee cup lids–collected from delis, java huts and gas stations–are thoughtful and complex in their design. As a new technologies ranging from computer-aided design and manufacturing to scientific analysis of the ordinary act of drinking have converged on such simple bits of circular plastic, the hot beverage lid has developed an astonishingly complex geometry. We present these lids disassociated from their everyday place atop your coffee cup in order to highlight the variety of visual and sculptural forms conceived by designers en route to fulfilling a utilitarian mission. Despite their practicality and function, many of the lids are delightful, even beautiful, to look at–small-scale sculptures that enhance our day-to-day experience.

“Caution: Contents Hot” runs from September 1 to December 1, 2007 at the Cincinnati Art Museum.