The 21st Century has seen the rules of printmaking shattered. Why not then float prints in mid-air, or even make the print be the wall? The work on the right is 24' tall and 56' wide, and was commissioned by the Consol Energy Center for the building's Lexus Club. The building is now known as the PPG Paints Arena, and is home to the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League. To get an idea of the scale, here's an image of a 6'4", 210 pound hockey player standing in front of the work. To learn more about the building, or host a party in the shadow of this monumental print, click here.
Another project in the expanded field is an artists book, done with poet, and Gold Record winning songwriter, Christopher Watkins, a.k.a. Preacher Boy. The book consists of ten extremely beautiful poems and ten photographic collages printed on Moab Entrada. The project began when I sent a photographic collage unannounced via email to Chris. His response was the first poem of 25 Adult Lifejackets.
The inaugural exhibition of the book and related work was held at Ashawagh Hall, in The Springs, a community of artists and baymen, and home of Jackson Pollack, located just north of East Hampton, New York. An installation view is on the right, as is a page from the book.
Artists books may take any form, but offer the unique quality that they may be carried with you, further illustrating the versatility of printmaking and the broad possibilities of printmaking in the expanded field.
Here's one of my favorite poems from the book . . .
As if she has two marbles in her ears ----
taupe and ochre swirls laced with
cream, ocean greens, a light sienna, deftly polished
glints of sterling silver ---- sounds of
clapping reach her mind,
prisim-angled, from a small but yearning
distance, like a wind gust moving
through a bleached-out skull.
prays, she lays her hands out like a
net over the sea.
Above her, in the ceiling, neon
lights become her newfound constellations;
the mythologies of hospitals enacted in a
cold electric drama ---- sounds of
elevators, oxygen, the
pumps, graying clocks.
prays, her net of hands becomes a
quivering Cat’s Cradle.
Through the conches of her ears,
she invites all the cadence of the ocean. Lying
drying in the bolted sterling of her cot ---- withered
a starfish on a pillow ---- she is
wondering if someone young will pull her legs off.
© Christopher Watkins
To read more of Chris's work click here.
All images © Scott Sandell/Deepwater Projects 2019
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Portrait of the artist as a young man at Vermillion Editions. To read more about Vermillion and the artists who worked there, click here.