This exhibition presents the work of outstanding printmakers that use small printed forms for intimate visual engagement and graphic invention. The quality of their vision is expressed through an attentive nature and handwork. Additional small prints from the Constellation Studios collection will be on view.
Two artists from Tokyo Japan have been in residence here during November. Kazuko Araki and Kaoru Morita are sharing a great experience for concentration on their printmaking and enjoying cultural exchange. This is their first visit to the USA, and they are seeing Nebraska go through all the drama of fall to winter changes, while enjoying the open prairie landscape, football crowds, and studio activities of exhibitions and workshops. We are enjoying our language efforts and translations about life and printmaking! Special thanks to the Center for the Science of Human Endeavor in Tokyo for continuing to facilitating this exchange opportunity for Japanese artists!
Kaoru is working in Mokuhanga (Japanese watercolor woodblock) with soft colors printed by hand, one each day for a color record of atmosphere and influences. She specializes in shallow carving into the woodblock, so that beautiful nuances of tone are printed. Her drawing is here of a still life from some of the handblown glass pieces of Kenny Walton, and her woodblock print from this image is just getting underway.
Kazuko has created two editions of collagraph prints, from multiple cardboard plates, that have textures and drypoint scratches that hold the ink, printed in registration for a constructivist landscape for mountain goats. She is inventive with her platemaking and the beautiful printed layers. These two artist friends have studied printmaking together at the Musashino Art School in Tokyo.
Seven contemporary artists present works in print media and new technological approaches that examine the continuing necessity for the print in contemporary culture, with an aesthetic need for the printed mark with intent, and how impact is made. Printmakers have continuously been the adapters of new technologies since the 15th Century, and are at the forefront of “inter-print” adaptations today, with the use of digital technologies for printing, for carving and platemaking, for photo-mechanical integrations, as well as photo imagery inclusions. Significantly, prints today respond to the look of our technological age, that grants aesthetic weight to data gathering, chart and graph lines, the visual overload and dynamism of designed ad/image production, glowing screen colors and light as the impression. These artists question how to see and examine the world around us, through visual cues and memory.
Asher places graphic charged words to provoke our reading eye and mindfulness as a means to shape culture. Garber seeks to express the confusion and clarity of information, with structures that suggest the cochlea, the eardrum, and instruments of sound. Pietrantoni combines laser burning and corrosion onto paper to speak of nature’s cycles of decay, destruction and loss. Gipson creates sensual surfaces across digital prints as bodies fall or leap, with despair and hope giving us anxious encounters with human nature. Riviera references the sense of truth and respect in map imagery, as digital deletion with laser engraving enacts the exchange of viruses and natural resources that are relevant to the history of colonization. Robertson questions how imagination, geometry and structure relate to our physical and cultural environment, as rapid changes create loss of landmarks as touchstones for our history and continuity, while technology is a promise for a better world. Waterkotte uses print and graphic production to intersect the archetypal using backlighting to double the layering, seeking to detect messages or visions that come from mysticism, beliefs and familiar but individual occult.
Curated by Karen Kunc, Cather Professor of Art, UNL.
This exhibition coincides with the Mid America College Art Association Conference hosted by the UNL School of Art, Art History & Design, October 4-6, 2018. The conference theme is “Techne Expanding: New Tensions, Tools, Terrain”.
Barbara Tetenbaum is a visual artist interested in the act of reading. She uses the mediums of books, prints, installation, and animation to explore this subject matter. She founded her artist book imprint, Triangular Press, in 1979. Barb is the recipient of two Fulbright Fellowships, career and project awards from the Oregon Arts Commission, Ford Family Foundation, Oregon Community Foundation and the Regional Arts and Culture Council. She is currently Professor and Head of the Book + Print at the Oregon College of Art and Craft. She holds a B.S. (Fine Art) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Artists play with printmaking solutions that feature graphic patterning, complex play of image making, effects of optical or layered color mixing, all created through carving and printing of woodblocks. There is raw yet elegant mastery in their works and references to nature, science and social commentary.
Inspiring are new prints from Anne Burton (Lincoln), Betsy Best (Seattle) and Jean Gumpper (Colorado Springs), and significant suites of prints from the past by Keiko Hara (Walla Walla) and Brian Curling (Radebeul, Germany), brought to view from the flat files in the Constellation Studios collection.
Metropolis is a handmade book venture in a spectrum of printmaking processes by artists from around the world, including two from Constellation Studios. The theme speaks to the broad contemporary urban experience and extends to the idea of the network of communication possible today.
The idea for this collaboration came from Berlin-based artist Andreas Kramer who prints at Centro Internazionale della Grafica (CIG) in Venice where Metropolis was realized under the guidance of master bookmaking Silvano Gosparini and where the Renaissance legacy of traditional Venetian book publishing continues.
Among the 303 interpretations of this theme, the reader is destined to discover reflections of one’s own meandering thoughts about ‘metropolis’. The leporello (accordion) construction enhances this stream-of-consciousness effect as it stretches fully to 215 feet. Ideas circling forwards and backwards through compositional and iconic connections and diversions make an impression underlined by the haptic qualities of the media where ink makes sculptural lines on paper.
What lingers is a metropolis of the mind, a crazy-creative vitality mirroring the variability and vicissitudes of existence, and inspiring a continuing interaction, and a visually challenging mix.
Participants come from: Australia, Japan, Brazil, USA, Italy, Germany, Russia, Poland, Hungary, UK, France, Spain, Tunisia, Canada. The edition of three has been circulating on exhibition in Italy, Germany, USA and most recently in Sao Paolo, Brazil, and at the Katzen Rotunda Gallery, American University, Washington, DC. This is the premier exhibition in the mid-west.
CONCURRENT is Invisible Cities, an exhibit of artists’ books and folios destined to become a collaborative leporello book that present new interpretations of urbanity. The theme is inspired by the imaginative novel Le citta invisibili by Italian writer Italo Calvino, published in Italy in 1972 in which Marco Polo reports to Emperor Kublia Khan on fantastical, dream-like cities all named after women that he purportedly visited. This book is organized in a mathematical structure. After each eleven descriptions, the two men discuss ideas that evolve from the tales, reflecting on human nature and linguistics.
It remains to be seen what ideas, images and symbology the 150+ US national and international artists will contribute expressing the evolving new experience of real, ideal and virtual contemporaneous and futuristic city life.
Here is the link to a beautiful video of Art at Cedar Point, my summer course taught at UNL Cedar Point Biological Station, near Ogallala, Nebraska. Created by Kat Shiffler, who has captured the intent of this art and science collaboration. Watch and enjoy!
Thanks everyone for a great workshop! We first made paper from cotton linters and Half-stuff, and t-shirts. And then we processed kozo fibers, which we cooked, washed and beat by hand and in the beater. Great experiments and experiences were enjoyed, and good discussions of the process and history. Here are some action shots!