JEZE November 2011 : Page 57

culture Fine Print At a highly anticipated new gallery show, the time-honored craft of printmaking gets its dues. W ith only one exhibit every two years, the “Atlanta Print Biennial,” which debuts this month, is a visual treat that certainly doesn’t come around very often. It’s also a creative boon to a city that gives props to painting and celebrates photography, but leaves printmaking largely out of the mainstream. So, many may be surprised to learn of Atlanta’s rich print history—one that Atlanta Printmakers Studio is working to revive. The grassroots organization arose in 2005 to fill the void left by Atlanta’s nationally renowned Nexus Press and Rolling Stone Press, both defunct in the early aughts. The APS has since championed the alluringly antiquated printmaking arts as much as it’s welcomed new technologies that constantly inform and improve them. Rich Gere, who moved to Atlanta in 2005 to found SCAD’s printmaking depart-ment, joined the APS board in 2009, and is helping to organize excit-ing exhibitions like the inaugural Atlanta Print Biennial, an anony-mous juried competition opening Nov. 5 at Barbara Archer Gallery. Barbara Archer’s opportune Inman Park location and reputation for boundary-pushing shows were instrumental in the pairing, but the progressive gallerist’s willingness to put her faith in APS’ chosen juror, Beth Grabowski, made it an ideal union. Archer herself will not see these works until their debut, but she isn’t worried. Grabows-ki, a professor and associate chair of the department of art at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has taught printmaking at a university level since 1985. She’s also co-authored one of the pre-eminent textbooks on the subject, Printmaking: A Complete Guide to Materials and Processes , now in its second edition. “Every young printmaker will have the bible of their generation, and for those studying now, Beth’s is it,” Gere explains. Which is why, when Grabowski requested to add 20 entries to the show’s origi-nal 50, Archer didn’t bat an eye. After all, the scope was enormous. Calls for entries were made globally—via social media—to over-whelming response, drawing more than 750 submissions from across the U.S., Canada, Europe, Japan and South America. As far-reaching as that sounds, Gere is quick to assert that the printmaking world is a close-knit one; you know who the major players are, and, delight-fully, many of them are represented at this show. Still, printmaking newbies may be startled by its diversity. As Gere explains, printmaking is a tree with many branches, encompass-ing etching, engraving, lithography, screen printing, letterpress, relief and more. Many of these disciplines branch out yet again from there, making the possibilities seem almost infinite. The “Atlanta Print Biennial” showcase runs the whole gamut, from dimensional works mounted on fiberboard and colorful painted monotypes, to artfully assembled books and painstakingly burnished copper mezzotints. jezebel Ephemeral screen prints on ice by Eszter Augustine-Sziksz are captured in a short film, so you can watch them melt into obscurity, while lithographs from Beauvais Lyons’ surrealistic “Dark Nebulae,” an acrylic series, Creative Zoology —based on the screen print on wood panel by APS member idea of intelligent design—mesmerize. Stacie Uhinck Rose The roundup continues with the mis-chievous linocut caricatures “Not Good Enough,” a relief print by of prominent British artist Boston-area artist Erika Adams Chris Pig, as well as mez-zotints by internationally collected New Jerseyan Art Werger. “[Mezzotinting] is probably the most difficult process in printmaking, and he handles it in such a spectacular way,” Gere notes. “So having one of these hanging at a competi-tive show in Atlanta is really something. It’s “Learning to Breathe,” showing the best of the best.” a linocut by APS founding president There are also a few locals in the mix: Stephanie Smith Melissa Harshman, chair of the printmaking department at University of Georgia’s Lamar Dodd School of Art, has submitted one of her signature inkjet screen prints, while Joey Hannaford, an assistant professor at the University of West Georgia, will introduce visitors to his very cool take on type. Price points vary, affording chances to snag works by artists just starting out—like SCAD graduate student Shaun McCallum— as well as some of those more accomplished in the field. The latter may cost a pretty penny, but as Gere tells us, it’s well worth it. The “Atlanta Print Bien-nial” is on view Nov. 5 “Aval Sea Monument #3,” an intaglio print by Albuquerque artist Frol Boudin through Dec. 3 at Barbara Archer Gallery, 280 Eliz-abeth St., 404.523.1845, barbaraarcher.com, atlan-taprintmakersstudio.org –K ate a bney ma gazine 57

Fine Print

At a highly anticipated new gallery show, the time-honored craft of printmaking gets its dues.

With only one exhibit every two years, the "Atlanta Print Biennial," which debuts this month, is a visual treat that certainly doesn't come around very often. It's also a creative boon to a city that gives props to painting and celebrates photography, but leaves printmaking largely out of the mainstream. So, many may be surprised to learn of Atlanta's rich print history-one that Atlanta Printmakers Studio is working to revive.

The grassroots organization arose in 2005 to fill the void left by Atlanta's nationally renowned Nexus Press and Rolling Stone Press, both defunct in the early aughts. The APS has since championed the alluringly antiquated printmaking arts as much as it's welcomed new technologies that constantly inform and improve them. Rich Gere, who moved to Atlanta in 2005 to found SCAD's printmaking department, joined the APS board in 2009, and is helping to organize exciting exhibitions like the inaugural Atlanta Print Biennial, an anonymous juried competition opening Nov. 5 at Barbara Archer Gallery.

Barbara Archer's opportune Inman Park location and reputation for boundary-pushing shows were instrumental in the pairing, but the progressive gallerist's willingness to put her faith in APS' chosen juror, Beth Grabowski, made it an ideal union. Archer herself will not see these works until their debut, but she isn't worried. Grabowski, a professor and associate chair of the department of art at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has taught printmaking at a university level since 1985. She's also co-authored one of the preeminent textbooks on the subject, Printmaking: A Complete Guide to Materials and Processes, now in its second edition.

"Every young printmaker will have the bible of their generation, and for those studying now, Beth's is it," Gere explains. Which is why, when Grabowski requested to add 20 entries to the show's original 50, Archer didn't bat an eye. After all, the scope was enormous. Calls for entries were made globally-via social media-to overwhelming response, drawing more than 750 submissions from across the U.S., Canada, Europe, Japan and South America. As far-reaching as that sounds, Gere is quick to assert that the printmaking world is a close-knit one; you know who the major players are, and, delightfully, many of them are represented at this show.

Still, printmaking newbies may be startled by its diversity. As Gere explains, printmaking is a tree with many branches, encompassing etching, engraving, lithography, screen printing, letterpress, relief and more. Many of these disciplines branch out yet again from there, making the possibilities seem almost infinite. The "Atlanta Print Biennial" showcase runs the whole gamut, from dimensional works mounted on fiberboard and colorful painted monotypes, to artfully assembled books and painstakingly burnished copper mezzotints.

Ephemeral screen prints on ice by Eszter Augustine-Sziksz are captured in a short film, so you can watch them melt into obscurity, while lithographs from Beauvais Lyons' surrealistic series, Creative Zoology-based on the idea of intelligent design-mesmerize. The roundup continues with the mischievous linocut caricatures of prominent British artist Chris Pig, as well as mezzotints by internationally collected New Jerseyan Art Werger. "[Mezzotinting] is probably the most difficult process in printmaking, and he handles it in such a spectacular way," Gere notes. "So having one of these hanging at a competitive show in Atlanta is really something. It's showing the best of the best."

There are also a few locals in the mix: Melissa Harshman, chair of the printmaking department at University of Georgia's Lamar Dodd School of Art, has submitted one of her signature inkjet screen prints, while Joey Hannaford, an assistant professor at the University of West Georgia, will introduce visitors to his very cool take on type.

Price points vary, affording chances to snag works by artists just starting out-like SCAD graduate student Shaun McCallum- as well as some of those more accomplished in the field. The latter may cost a pretty penny, but as Gere tells us, it's well worth it. The "Atlanta Print Biennial" is on view Nov. 5 through Dec. 3 at Barbara Archer Gallery, 280 Elizabeth St., 404.523.1845, barbaraarcher.com, atlantaprintmakersstudio.Org -Kate abney

Read the full article at http://digital.modernluxury.com/article/Fine+Print/880116/87218/article.html.

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