Tag Archives: January Invitational

Next Week: “Birth of the American Artist Printmaker”

"Flying Fish Fossil" by Stephen Fredericks

Next Saturday we are excited to welcome back Stephen Fredericks, founding member of the New York Society of Etchers for a 1:30 talk.  Stephen has developed an audio-visual presentation called “Birth of the American Artist Printmaker,” which grew out of his book on the New York Etching Club (published 2009 by Rice University Press, details at the link).

Stephen’s talk covers a period of American artist activity – primarily etching – that accompanied a broader graphic arts movement during the last quarter of the 19th Century, and the underlying significance of this era defined by a national graphic arts, and etching boom – which gave birth to American artist printmaking as we know it today.  The slideshow Stephen compiled includes early ‘artist etchings’ made by members of the New York Etching Club, their applications in fine press books, early portfolios, and in exhibitions – followed by images of more commercially refined decorative art books, auction catalogues and limited editions by important publishers of the day.

Again, this lecture/discussion begins at 1:30 pm on Saturday, January 28th (next Saturday).  A closing reception for the show immediately follows Stephen’s talk.  We hope you will be able to join us!

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Show Pics: NY Soc. of Etchers Invitational

Prints by members of the New York Society of Etchers

Wow!  We hope you can come to our opening on Saturday (or Stephen Frederick’s lecture on January 28) to see all of the great work in this exhibition.  Not all of the work in the show is included in the slideshow below–you have to come in to see it!–but you can get a pretty good idea of the caliber here.  Bonus:  The last few images are from the members’ January exhibition.

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From our Newsletter: NY Society of Etchers Invitational

The following is an excerpt from an article in our Winter Newsletter, which you can see in its entirety at the link above.

"Flying Fish in Blue" by Stephen Fredericks

The 2012 Invitational follows ‘Bewick’s Legacy: Six Contemporary British Wood Engravers’ as a second group invitational, which this time will show approximately forty prints by ten artists, all directors of the NY Society of Etchers. The prints of the NYSE will include a wide variety of stylistic approaches, from straight line etching to heavily scraped and re-worked plates, from improvisational and free handwork to more carefully planned images. Viewers visiting the exhibition will see both figurative and abstract images as well as prints that celebrate process, explore narrative subjects, or pursue conceptual approaches.

Richie Lasansky, whose work will be included in the exhibition, comments, “There is no particular theme or restriction for our show, and although we are the NY Etching Society, that isn’t an indication of our technical preferences and is actually more of a nod to a previous organization: the NY Etching Club (active from 1877-1894). As far as technique, there will be all kinds of etching: lift ground, soft ground, spit bite, aquatint, straw hat, white ground. Direct techniques (such as) dry point, scraping, burnishing and engraving, (as well as) monotype, solar plate etching and some paper litho. And even the odd woodcut or two.”

"Unrestrained" by Susan Sears

As a group of exhibiting artists, the NYSE began its formal exhibition program in 2000, creating and collaborating in 20 exhibitions of artist prints. Eight of these efforts have focused exclusively on the graphic arts of local emerging artists and not-for-profit workshops; thirteen of the shows have had international influences with collaborating artists from Hungary, China, France, Ireland, Peru, the Ukraine and Australia. The remaining seven exhibitions have been organized on behalf of cultural institutions in Bridgeport, CT, the Ukrainian Institute of America and the Paramount Center of the Arts in Peekskill, NY. So far, ten exhibitions have been documented with professionally published catalogues.

The NY Society of Etchers Invitational will be on view January 4-28, with an opening reception on Saturday, January 7 and a talk by Stephen Fredericks followed by a closing reception on Saturday, January 28, at 1:30 pm.

Sneak Peek: December and January Exhibitions

Below is a slideshow of work by Martha Oatway, Tracy Hill, and the New York Society of Etchers.  Martha and Tracy’s show, Field of Vision, opens next week.  This exhibition pushes past the usual print-on-paper-in-frame to include large, free-floating prints by Tracy that hang down into the gallery from the ceiling, prints on plexi by Martha, and a sound installation in the Press Room.  The opening reception is Saturday, December 3, 1-4 pm.  We’re especially delighted to have Tracy joining us all the way from Preston, England!

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The last few images of the above slide show are be several members of the New York Society of Etchers, who are WPG’s January Invitational artists.  NYSE was formed in 1998, in the spirit of a preceding group known as the New York Etchers Club (founded in 1877). Today’s New York Society of Etchers focuses on providing exhibition opportunities to intaglio printmaking specialists in New York City, and is internationally recognized as an artist-run print organization with dozens of major exhibitions. Currently, there are close to 300 New York printmakers associated with the society (ten of which will be exhibiting here).  The opening for this exhibition is Saturday, January 7 1-4 pm.

Post-Snow Update

Marcus Aurelius III, Wood Engraving by Simon Brett, on view through tomorrow!

We’re back and fully functioning!  A sincere apology to all who tried to get in contact with us–it’s been quite a week!  First, our website host company was migrating data, which meant our email/website were intermittently effected.  Second, the winter storm knocked out power in the area.  While the gallery’s power was restored quickly, the power to Comcast’s main transmission site for Montgomery County was not–meaning we were without phone or internet for a few days.

But now our sidewalks are clear and the gallery is open–and just in time, too.  If you haven’t seen it yet, don’t miss Bewick’s Legacy: Six Contemporary British Wood Engravers. We have sold a staggering 32 prints from this show as well as some of the beautiful wood engraving books we have on view exclusively in the gallery.  We are open until 5 pm today and 12-5 tomorrow, so hurry in!

"The Pearl Necklace," wood engraving by Harry Brockway

Starting Wednesday, our first ever Excellence in Printmaking exhibition will be up.  Originally, this was an award given to an area MFA/BFA candidate for their commitment to printmaking.  This year, Katherine Blood, Curator of Fine Prints at the Library of Congress, juried prints from MFA/BFA candidates in the mid-Atlantic region, selecting 40 to be included in this exhibition.  There are some talented students out there!  And as I mentioned in my post on UMD’s “Impressed” exhibition, it is a great opportunity to buy a print by a future big-time artist.  Get them while they’re young and affordable!  The opening reception and awards ceremony for this show is Saturday, February 5, 1-4 pm.  Below are a few prints to whet your appetite:

"Rough" by Fawna Xiao, screenprint and ink drawing, 12x22 in, 2009

"Never Again, Rodney, Never" by Eric Owusu, Intaglio,11x14, 2009.

"So Bad" by Tonja Torgerson, serigraph, 22x20 in, 2009.

Four shows to check out this weekend

The Kreeger Museum’s exhibition “In Unison, 20 Washington, DC Artists” features monoprints by, you guessed it, 20 Washington, DC artists.  This exhibition is the result of efforts by Sam Gilliam, a DC artist who has been associated with the Washington Color School since the 1960’s.  Gilliam invited these 20 artists from diverse artistic backgrounds to make five monoprints each.  Gilliam and a small board then selected one print from each artist to make the final exhibition.  We haven’t been to see this show yet, but it promises to be a good one!  The Kreeger Museum is open on Saturday, 10-4 pm, $10 admission, no reservations needed. Reservations are needed Tuesday-Friday.  Click on the link above for more information about this show and directions.  Exhibition runs through February 26th.

"Love, Respect, Protect" by Marian Osher, not in her current "Art Matters" Exhibition, but a great print nonetheless!

This weekend WPG member artist Marian Osher will host a reception and artist talk for her exhibition “Art Matters” at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Rockville (100 Welsh Park Drive, Rockville, MD 20850).  This exhibition features paintings and prints “created over a 10 year period to combat fear, promote connection and mindfulness, and raise awareness of the importance of living in harmony with the environment.”  Read Topher Forhecz review in the Gazette, then attend her reception this Sunday, January 23, 11:30-1:00, exhibition runs through February 6.

"From Siem Rep" by Jenny Freestone

WPG artist Jenny Freestone also has a solo exhibition up in the Monroe Gallery of the Arts Club of Washington (2017 I Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006).  This gallery is closed Sunday and Monday, so try and make it over during their Saturday hours, 10-2 pm.  Exhibition runs through January 29.

Finally, if you haven’t seen WPG’s current exhibition, “Bewick’s Legacy: Six Contemporary British Wood Engravers,” you should!  The exhibition was favorably reviewed this week by Claudia Rousseau for the Gazette.  It has also been well received by the public, with 12 of the prints selling already, several of those multiple times over (oh, the joy of editions–if your favorite print has sold, we may be able to get another for you!).  This exhibition closes next weekend (Sunday, January 30) so get in here before it’s too late!

Collecting Art

"Tynemouth Priory" by Hilary Paynter, this could be a great starting print for an art collection!

I wanted to write a little bit about collecting art, since we have a limited offering of some very well known and talented printmakers in our current show, Bewick’s Legacy.  These are personal thoughts from a gallery director to be taken as such, I do not profess to be an investment specialist or predictor of future trends in the art market!

Starting an art collection is a beneficial experience for so many reasons–it is a wonderful way to support the fine arts, many people collect as part of their investment strategy, and of course, you increase the aesthetics of your home or office!  Also, starting an art collection can be done by anyone on any budget and at any age!  Prints, of course, are a great way to start an art collection because you can buy beautiful, original artwork for much less than many similarly sized paintings or sculpture.

When starting an art collection, the number one most important thing to do is buy art you like!  DON’T buy work because it is by a big-shot artist, DON’T buy work to impress other people, and DON’T buy work because you think you’ll be able to sell it in a year or two for more.  You want to buy pieces that you can live with and enjoy.  If visitors to your home or office compliment the work or the work happens to appreciate in value, then that should just be an added bonus.

That being said, there are some things to look for when you are starting or adding to your collection.  The work should be of high technical quality (unless of course shotty construction is part of the concept of the piece, but that’s a whole different conversation!)  Make sure that canvasses have squared corners and don’t raise unevenly off the wall.  Works on paper should be clean of finger prints, errant ink blots, etc.  If you are buying framed pieces, the frame corners should be square and the mats clean, as well.

Also, see if the artist and artwork matches your collection ideology.  If you are collecting artwork simply because it is pretty, then go right ahead and buy it, no extra thought needed!  However, if you are trying to create a more specific collection (say, contemporary female artists, regional printmakers, or artworks with roots in Cubism), then you need to do a little more research.  This can be as easy as asking the gallery assistant or looking on the artist’s website for an artist statement and resume. When you do buy a work, ask for the CV (resume) 0f that artist and keep it in a file with your receipt, so you have documentation to back up your art collection.

In closing, I invite you to take a moment and think about what kind of art YOU like, what kind of space you have on your walls, and what you might want to do with that upcoming tax refund check.  Who knows, in 10 years you could become the premier private collector of artist depictions of Florence (a beautiful subject artists of many media seem to be drawn to), or maybe the National Gallery of Art will want your collection of contemporary botanical prints.  The opportunities only multiply with your first purchase of artwork!