Mexican printmaking, female solidarity, land use take spotlight in UOG’s latest art exhibit through October.
The Isla Center for the Arts at the University of Guam will feature an exhibit on contemporary printmaking/ . The exhibit, “Bonding: An Exhibition of Contemporary Printmaking” will be open and free to the public from Sept. 27 to Oct. 26
This exhibition, curated by Dr. Irena Keckes, assistant professor of art at UOG, consists of three main components. All three are intersecting in themes and concepts of mainly socially engaged art that join the diverse works into one entity.
First is an exchange portfolio, “Frontera,” a part of the Mid America Print Council international printmaking conference held from Oct. 3–6 at the University of Wyoming. Prior to creating their artwork, artists participating in this portfolio were asked to consider, reflect, and then respond through artwork to how they interpret homeland, line, boundary, border, limit, confine, or closure. The use of land to embrace or separate, contribute to a collaborative cause, or work quietly alone in the present time were sub-questions inspiring these artworks. “Frontera” consists of 30 artists’ prints.
The second part of the exhibition reflects on an artist-in-residency program that Keckes undertook from July 4–26 in Grieta Negra Taller, a printmaking studio in Puebla City, Mexico. It shows main outcomes of Keckes’ residency project — prints and printed objects. One emphasis in this part is artwork created by contemporary Mexican printmakers using various print methods, such as linocut, etching, screen-print and more. Mexican prints mostly address current social and political issues related to their environments. They are produced in exquisite carving and printing methods, specific to Mexican print traditions. In this section:
“Frida Kahlo,” a 2017 piece by artist Mario Martinez using the linocut printmaking technique.
Mario Martinez, a director of Grieta Negra Tallar, presents his linocuts, showing mastery in technique and concept;
Jiro Martinez, an assistant in Grieta Negra Taller, presents his relief prints;
Odin Barrios, a printmaker from Zacatecas, applies a non-toxic process of electrolysis to produce his etchings;
Pedro Lopez Recendez, also from Zacatecas, presents his politically engaged screen prints and etchings; and
Emiliano Carrasco, a well-established artist from Guadalupe, shows his relief prints.
The third part of this exhibition includes a large-scale print installation exhibited at the IMPACT 10 printmaking conference held Sept. 1–9 in Santander, Spain. The print is a collaborative work by Keckes and Polish artist Katarzyna Zimna. The two artists have formed a “Femigraphic” print collective to connect, explore, and disseminate the feminine/feminist side of printmaking practices. At the IMPACT 10 exhibition, Zimna and Keckes presented the print installation titled “Bonding,” consisting of woodcuts and linocuts on fabric. Each artist came to the site of the exhibition in Spain with her fragments of the work, and they sewed these pieces together, creating one conjoint artwork, and therefore adding the element of performativity into the work. The project, the first outcome of the Femigraphic collective, celebrates an idea of women’s solidarity — a need to come together and support each other.
This exhibition is sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences at the University of Guam.
"Bonding," conjoint artwork by Katarzyna Zimna and Irena Keckes using linocut and woodcut printmaking techniques on fabric.