Thumbnail sketches, tracings, and preparatory drawings highlight the work before printing begins. Doodles and intuitive marks evolve into graphite ‘planning cartoons’ drawn to scale with delicate passages and rhythmic energy that form concept and unknown adventure. Selections of Karen Kunc’s drawings are paired with her colorful woodcut prints that result from the mark-making impetus.
Shiho, from Tokyo, Japan, spent the month of November at Constellation Studios, and worked well in the rhythm of life in Lincoln, and with her own creative discipline. She planned and accomplished a large multi-sheet monoprint that addresses the subtleties of luxury fabrics and the fashion world. She also experimented with drypoint prints made from thousands of minute scratches on plastic plates, that she printed with water-base inks. This technique, new for her, enabled her to make a small series of journal-like images from her experiences in Nebraska, and then a complex 4 part detailed image of a model on the runway and the audience. Shiho demonstrated incredible persistence and patience to realize her print projects! All so impressive for our First Friday visitors. Thanks for your residency Shiho!
A virtual walk through of the gallery! Metropolis includes 303 international artists and originated in Europe and was assembled in Venice Italy in 2014. Invisible Citieswill be bound in 2016, and all the 228 folio pages are shown on the walls. This new accordion folded book has contributions from across the USA, and from Chile, Italy, Poland, France, Argentina, Egypt, Canada, Switzerland, Japan, India, Finland, New Zealand, Columbia, Guatemala. The artists book are made in response to the evocative theme of Invisible Cities and join to enrich the installation.
Thanks to Madison for painting a great mural this summer! This mysterious narrative intrigues us with a fantasy world of larger -than-life figures that seem to stand in the garden plantings. Madison has a distinctive style and dedication to the her visual story-telling. You can join this ongoing story with a great photo op in front of this mural!
Denise Bookwalter and Lee Emma Running have been working for two weeks to realize the installation project Lining: Sheathing. In the studio they have made huge handmade papers sheets, printed onto the paper with laser cut woodblocks for repeat patterns, and assembled and sewn fabrics to construct a shelter in the gallery space. Here are some images of works in progress:
A room size tent enclosure, inspired by Yurts and other nomadic domestic structures, is the core of the installation.It will be covered with canvas walls that have been screen printed with a variety of designs, such as Fair Isle knits, traditional crewel work embroidery, an image of a “whorl” of wool, or a “bloom” of cotton.Hand dyed silk lines the interior of the tent structure of a shadow like pattern, using the image of a cotton boil that was laser cut into plexi glass and clamped with the silk, for resist dip-dying on the delicate material.Inside the dark space of the tent a bed-sized platform will be covered with two hand-embroidered felt blankets.Large handmade papers of Iowa grown kozo fiber will be made during the residency, and then printed with laser engraved woodblocks, that will be hung on the gallery walls.Lining:Sheathing gives evidence of a love of textiles, while reflecting the beauty of materials that protect and house the body.
Denise Bookwalter works in a range of print media including traditional and digital processes, artist’s books, installations and dimensional prints. Her artists’ books utilize old and new print technologies to create collaborative artists’ books. The National Endowment of the Arts funded her most recent collaborative artists book, Rain/fall. Her work has been exhibited in a variety of venues nationally as well as internationally. She received her BA from Northwestern University and her MFA from Indiana University in Printmaking. Denise currently lives in Tallahassee, Florida and is an Associate Professor of Art at Florida State University where she teaches printmaking and is Area Head of the Printmaking Department. She is the director and a founding member of Florida State University’s artists book press, Small Craft Advisory Press.
Lee Emma Running is trained as a traditional papermaker and sculptor. She is currently an Associate Professor at Grinnell College and received a BFA from Pratt Institute in 1999 and an MFA from the University of Iowa in 2005. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally at venues including the Charlotte Street Foundation, Kansas City KS, the Martin Art Gallery, Muhlenberg PA, and the Rijeka Museum of Contemporary Art, Rijeka Croatia. She’s been granted residencies at The Vermont Studio Center, Jentel Artists Residency, Penland School of Crafts and Anchor Graphics, and was in residence in the fall of 2015 at the Santa Fe Art Institute in New Mexico. She is represented by Olsen Larson Gallery.
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.
Special Earth Day viewing, Saturday April 23, 10am – 5pm
First Friday Reception, May 6, 6 – 8pm
The Last Glacier is a visual print record of the glaciers in Glacier National Park, Montana, by artists Todd Anderson and Bruce Crownover, who made treks on location over recent years, and created prints in their studios. This project invokes a contemplation of wonder and loss in the face of seemingly powerful and pristine landscapes. “Glaciers have revealed themselves as inherently fragile, and more responsive to human impacts than we had imagined. The works translate our understandings of the impacts of global climate change into a comprehensible human scale.” – Nancy Mahoney
Also on view: Selections On Nature from the Print Collection
Todd Anderson was born in Rochester, Minnesota, USA. He received his BFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1997 and his MFA from the University of New Mexico in 2004. Anderson worked at various Fine Art print studios, including Tandem Press (Madison, Wisconsin, USA), The Tamarind Institute of Lithography (Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA) and The Artist’s Press (Mpumalanga, Republic of South Africa). He is an Assistant Professor of Printmaking at Clemson University. His work has been a presence at numerous major art fairs including Art Basel Miami, Art Chicago, Art Santa Fe, Editions/Artist’s Books Fair, Impressions Orlando, the New York Affordable Art Show and the San Francisco International Art Exposition, Scope Los Angeles and Scope London.
Bruce Crownover was born in 1961 in Southern California. He earned his BFA from Utah State University and MFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in 1989. Crownover worked with Keiji Shinohara, a Japanese Ukiyo-e master printer, in Boston, creating prints for Sean Scully, Chuck Close, Robert Stackhouse and John Newman. Crownover currently is Master Printer at Tandem Press, a fine art print studio affiliated with the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Expert in woodcarving, relief, Crownover is also known for a range of printmaking techniques. He has become a notable collaborator with over 80 artists such as Sam Gilliam, Richard Bosman, Robert Cottingham, and Judy Pfaff. He has also been a guest lecturer at various museums, colleges and universities, promoting his own art and Tandem Press.
On February 27th, Constellation Studios teams up with writers Katie Schmid Henson and Katie Pryor to host an evening of poetry and visual art. Doors open at 6:00pm, reading begins at 7:00pm, and an art raffle featuring donated work from local and UNL graduate artists will take place at 8:00pm. All proceeds will benefit The Family Literacy Program, supported by the Foundation for Lincoln Public Schools. Karen will also have the letterpress rolling out a few poems from the evening for guests to take home. Featured readers include Belinda Acosta, Katie Pryor, and Kim Tedrow. The event is free to the public and we’d love to see you there! For more information please visit the Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/878870602226630/
Constellation Studios presents Rainbow, an exhibition of vibrant color and the study of its printed effects. Printmakers effectively use the blending of colors with “split fountains” and “rainbow rolls” for continuous gradations that belie the flatness of plate or block – that imply printed kitsch and bravura, creating dynamic spatial illusions. The printing of luminous layers create complex patterns, or individuated swatches of color steps – suggesting the multiplicity of individual parts adding to the whole, as a social metaphor or visual phenomenon. This exhibition is a glowing symphony of color at play and work in contemporary form. Nationally recognized artists include: Mildred Beltre, Vermont; Laura Berman, Missouri; Jeffrey Dell, Texas; Tim Dooley and Aaron Wilson as Midwest Pressed, Iowa; Juergen Strunck, Texas.
Join us at Constellation Studios for an opening reception on Friday, February 19, 7 – 9pm.
Here are some highlights of the Artists in Residence this fall 2015!
Kathy Puzey, Logan, Utah, was in residence for two weeks in September-October. She is working on woodcut prints of “pieces of wood” – incredibly detailed and layered, that recreates the growth layers. She is creating these works for a sculptural installation of print objects. She enjoyed the concentrated time, and to reconnect with friends in Lincoln, as she is a UNL alumna.
Midori Iizuka, Tokyo, Japan, spent all of October at Constellation Studios. She drew inspiration from and literally traced the marks of the studio floor. She captures the random markings as gestures in ink and brush, that will be translated into screen prints onto fabric. She intends to use the large scale drawing for backdrop to her performance works. She also printed woodblocks and created book works, as well as taught a Shibori Tie-Dye workshop.
Macy Chadwick was Artist in Residence in early November for a week, developing prints for upcoming book projects. The prints were elegantly spare and beautiful, efficient with cut stencils, color layers, and concepts on breath and air. And those great pinks!
Robert L. Mejer, from Quincy, Illinois, was in residence in November for two weeks and saw the season grow colder. He set a steady pace for himself of productivity and invention, pulling 3 – 4 monoprints each day. His distinctive water-base monotype methods enable building of color and compositions, with added on collage plates for a one-time-through the press impression. He is working on prints during his sabbatical for an upcoming solo show.
Thank you all for being here and contributing to the studio energies and spirit!