Artist Update: Matina Marki Tillman Fall Exhibitions

Depicta by Matina Marki Tillman

Depicta by Matina Marki Tillman

From October 26th to November 8th 2014, Melbourne meets New York in the Joint Exhibition of Intaglio Prints under the title 40° 42’ N / 37° 48’ S at the National Arts Club in New York City. Matina Marki Tillman will participate with “Depicta,”one of her solarplate etchings of real or imagined graffiti preserving messages nearly lost in the human landscape. In this particular print the messenger (Greek “angelos”) appears with his comment on a New York City street. The exhibition was sponsored by the New York Society of Etchers, with juror Dr. Sean Corcoran, Curator of Prints and Photographs, Museum of the City of New York. “Depicta” will also be shown at the Washington Printmakers Gallery in the upcoming November member’s exhibition.

Earlier this fall, Matina participated in another New York City show, the Hudson Valley Art Association’s 82nd Annual Juried Exhibition, where her print “Arabesque” was selected for the Perry Alley Memorial Award. The show took place from September 20th to the 26th at the Salmagundi Club Gallery on 5th Avenue in New York. This annual juried exhibition strives to preserve the character, craftsmanship, and respect for the natural form, color and design which distinguish fine arts, and encourages artists’ participation with a wide variety of media.

Remembering Nuong – A Retrospective

If writers often write about what they know, does the same hold true for printmakers? Perhaps for Nuong Tran it does. Nuong Van-Dinh Tran was a founding member of Washington Printmakers Gallery. She remained a member of the gallery until her death in 2013. In this retrospective of Nuong’s work, we’re invited to enjoy a peacefulness that scenes of domestic familiarity bring. Here we see a view of the backyard from what is most likely a bedroom window. In another print, we’re in the yard looking up to the sky, through the leafless oak tree towering beside the house. In another, we get a close-up of deep-red peonies that line the yard’s fence. We also get a snapshot of Ling-Ling, Nuong’s black cat as he prowls the yard on an autumn afternoon. All these scenes are ever so familiar. Perhaps that’s why the prints make such an impact, the simplicity of Nuong’s images allow us an intimacy we might otherwise overlook in the familiar. Even her abstracts convey a simplicity in form and boldness of color that is both intimate and familiar. Who was Nuong? Her prints tell us much about what inspired her – nature – specifically water lilies, trees and butterflies. In this memorial retrospective we’re also invited to be inspired by the simple beauty of the familiar. What a wonderful celebration of life!

Artist Update: Matina Marki Tillman Late Summer / Early Fall Exhibitions

Carmen

They don’t let Carmen dance

Arabesque

Arabesque

Artist member Matina Marki Tillman will have prints on display in two national exhibitions during August and September.

“They don’t let Carmen dance,” a solarplate etching that carries on the artist’s series of charcoal drawings on vellum directly etched onto solarplates, is currently on display in the Northwest Area Arts Council’s Real People 2014, a show dedicated to the human figure and portraiture (Aug. 7 through Sept. 28). This recent work is the artist’s homage to the uncompromised female, as portrayed in two of her lifelong inspirations, Bizet’s opera, Carmen, and Kakoyiannis’ film Stella. Also this fall, “Arabesque,” the first of this series of etchings, will be hosted in the Salmagundi Club gallery in New York City for the Hudson Valley Art Association’s 82nd National Juried Exhibition running from Sept. 20-26.

“They don’t let Carmen dance” was also featured in the inaugural Washington Printmakers Gallery member’s exhibition at the new Georgetown gallery space in July. With the upcoming Hudson Valley show, prints from the “Arabesque” edition will be appearing in their sixth national exhibition in two years, including venues at the Customs House Museum in Clarksville, Tennessee; the Museum of Printing History in Houston, Texas; and the New York Society of Etchers national intaglio exhibition in New York’s National Arts Club gallery. This September, “Arabesque” will travel home to be included in the member’s show in WPG’s new gallery.

Intern Perspectives: 2014 National Small Works Exhibition & Diane Alire’s “Waiting for Godot”

Diane Alire "Shaded"

Diane Alire “Shaded”

From July 30th – August 31st, 2014, Washington Printmakers Gallery presents the 17th Annual National Small Works Exhibition. This exhibition displays thirty non-members’ works originating from across the country and selected by juror Jack Rasmussen, director and curator of the Katzen Center at American University. Running concurrently is the solo exhibition Waiting for Godot by the 2013 grand prizewinner, Diane Alire. Alire’s exhibition features twenty unique photogravures, which “juxtapose and layer the female and male figures with landscapes, images of walls, graffiti, and textures found in natural and urban settings.”

Alire’s work explores the human figure in artistic ways. She makes the figure a part of landscape and the world around it. Portraiture and landscape come together to create contemporary prints that surprise and challenge the viewer. Her 2013 Small Works prizewinning piece, Waiting for Godot, sets the tone for the exhibition. This piece explores the costumed female dancer figure, while the rest of the exhibition explores figures in the nude, particularly Shaded. Shaded juxtaposes a female nude, waist up, against a window. The female and window alternate foreground with background, and in a sense, the piece surrenders those two labels. In one way, the female is the subject in the window, and in another way, the female stands before the window. How are human figures reflected in our surroundings and how do our surroundings house those figures? Alire contrasts soft human curves against hard angular structures. Shaded acts as a window into the artistic mind where wall and figure combine to create one subject matter, which Alire masters.

While Alire’s exhibition explores similar themes in various interpretations, this year’s National Small Works Exhibition takes on many artists with unique themes, few which are similar. From pears to numbers, the Small Works exhibition exemplifies subjects’ and printmaking’s variety and potential. Elizabeth Dove’s All Letters demonstrates the many levels that make a print. Dove layers letters A – Z to create a simple yet complex print. Solely black and white, this print allows the letters to act as the work’s main focus. The artist takes a familiar concept, letters of the alphabet, and makes it art. She complicates and plays with our preconceived idea of what the alphabet should look like on paper. In this print, components of literature become art and art becomes literature. Much like Diane Alire’s works, All Letters plays with two concepts that become one.

Diane Alire "Push"

Diane Alire “Push”

July Receptions

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New Space in Georgetown

Washington Printmakers Gallery new space in Georgetown

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Our New Gallery

Whew! There have been lots of changes recently, including our move to a brand new, beautiful gallery space in Georgetown. Photos to come. Washington Printmakers Gallery in Georgetown