A Labor of Love And Imagination
by Franklin W. Liu
A disciplined process of experiential application pushing an extraordinarily flexible medium, fueled by an unyieldingly inquisitive, artistic mindset forged on discovery, uniquely describes printmaking. For printmakers, beauty is clearly inherent in the process itself, as much as in the finished print.
Since 1948, the Boston Print- makers have hosted a juried biennial printmaking awards exhibition to foster traditional as well as cutting- edge printmaking. They recognize that in a digital age, art is infinite in its variety of implementation, and new possibilities of the pedigree of printmaking as graphic art are not only rejuvenated but also vitally enhanced because of their steady, vibrant advocacy.
Liz Shepherd, president of Boston Printmakers, said nearly two thousand artworks from 699 artists, hailing from 49 states, seven Canadian provinces, Puerto Rico and Cuba were submitted for juror consideration to the prestigious 2015 North American Print Biennial.
The competition was intense, as typically only 105 to 135 artworks are chosen for the exhibition — approximately 6 percent of the total artworks submitted — with 20 artists selected by an invited sole juror to receive separate honor-awards. This year, that distinguished juror is Willie Cole.
An internationally known, award- winning American artist, Willie Cole’s own artwork commands an amazing range in visual arts in painting, in pushing the creative boundary in collaborative printmaking, in sculpture, in assemblage art and in conceptual art addressing contemporary societal issues. His artworks have been exhibited at, and are collected by, major art museums worldwide.