HOT OFF THE PRESS, on view at the Grolier Club from Dec. 13, 2006, to Feb. 3, 2007, presents prints released within the past year by some fifty artists. Produced by over twenty fine art printers resident in New York, the exhibition surveys current printmaking in the area and its span of subject matter, styles, and process -- both innovative and time-honored. “This is an opportunity,” says curator Janice Oresman, “to see within a single gallery the amazing results of the collaboration of artists with master printers who have inspired and challenged them.”
Included in the show are artists for whom prints are an important component of their overall work such as Louise Bourgeois, Chuck Close, Jim Dine, Elizabeth Murray, Sean Scully, and James Siena. Newcomers to printmaking are Ingrid Calame, Grace Matthews, and John Tremblay. Gregory Burnet Editions, Derrière l’Étoile, Dieu Donné Papermill, Harlan and Weaver, Lower Eastside Printshop, Pace Editions and Two Palms are among the many local printshops represented.
Varying dramatically in scale the works range from figuration to abstraction displaying dazzling color or subtle tones that make for an exciting mix of images. Traditional techniques of woodcut, etching, lithograph, photogravure, screenprint, and monotype have been joined by digital printing and the addition of unpredictable collage elements and various other hand work.
Included is portraiture by Francesco Clemente, Elizabeth Peyton and Tatiana Simonova, political commentary by Polly Apfelbaum and Edward del Rosario, and exuberant exploration of the non-objective by Melissa Meyer and Thomas Nozkowski. Words are integral to the compositions of Chris Costan, Trenton Doyle Hancock, Elaine Reichek, Allen Ruppersberg, May Stevens and Amy Wilson. Prints by Ghada Amer and Reza Farkhondeh, Glen Baldridge, and Ellen Gallagher exemplify the use of unexpected combinations of materials, such as embroidery thread, ground glass, faux fur, and pomade.
“The exhibition views the most recent chapter in the history of New York as a printmaking center,” Ms. Oresman comments. “New techniques and materials have encouraged printers and artists to experiment boldly. Exotic papers, creative inking, sophisticated presses and an interest in combining many methods in one impression contribute to the originality of the works shown.”
To see contemporary prints at the Grolier Club is only surprising at first glance. Founded in 1884 by six gentlemen book collectors who were publishers and fine printers, the Club has for over a century presented public exhibitions on book-related themes, including fine reproductive processes. Its presentations of Whistler etchings and Japanese woodblock prints were the first such exhibitions in New York in the 1890s, and the Club continues to explore print and book production, as seen in the 1993 exhibition American Livre de Peintre and most recently Claire Van Vliet and the Janus Press on view earlier this year.
Location and times:: HOT OFF THE PRESS is on view at the Grolier Club from. Dec. 13, 2006, to Feb. 3, 2007. Hours: Monday-Saturday 10 AM – 5 PM. Open to the public free of charge. For more information contact exhibitions coordinator Megan Smith at the Grolier Club.