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The Art of Business: Collector’s Press Lithographs
Collector’s Press Lithographs
November 15-December 21, 2012
Founded in 1967 in San Francisco, Collector’s Press was a lithography workshop where artists worked closely with master printers to create original lithographs. Under the direction of Ernest de Soto, artist and graduate of the famed Tamarind Lithography Workshop, Collector’s Press continued the West Coast tradition of reviving the lithography medium as an artistic means of expression.
Pushing printmaking to its limits, Collector’s Press encouraged artists to create works that exemplified the inherent strengths and beauty of lithography. By working with trained printers, artists who had never made a print before could create original work and experiment. Collector’s Press introduced countless artists to lithography and influenced many to become printmakers. The workshop closed in 1975, but its output influenced subsequent generations of artists and made an indelible mark on the American art scene.
The Housatonic Museum of Art has over 50 Collector’s Press prints in its collection. This exhibition will include about 45 of these impressive works, including prints by Enrico Baj, Nathan Oliveira, Sam Tchakalian, Jose Luis Cuevas, Mel Ramos and Deborah Remington.
Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit
Bridgeport, CT: The Housatonic Museum of Art is pleased to announce Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit, an exhibition that explores household tools as metaphor for the social and cultural histories of women embedded in them. Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit will be on view in the Burt Chernow Galleries at the Housatonic Museum of Art through September 6 through October 26, 2012.
Rickie Solinger, an award-winning author, historian and curator, reexamines women’s history by positioning tools used in a domestic setting as the “fulcrum for a contemporary work of art.” She says, “The artists in this exhibit place these old tools at the center of their own work: washboard, a dressmaker’s dummy, graters, doilies, an advice book, cooking pans, a basket, a garden hoe, dress patterns, a rolling pin, buckets, darning eggs, a work glove, a needle threader, rug beaters, ironing boards, mason jars and a telephone.”
The term “distaff” itself refers not only to the tool attached to a spinning wheel to hold unspun fibers, but over time, came to refer to women generally. Solinger points out, “Many of these old tools facilitated….repetitive labor and evoke the various cultural histories of women’s unpaid, often diminished and disrespected status within the household and society. But in the 21st century, at a moment when ‘old tools’ have become aestheticized and expensive, we can look again and see their costly beauty.”
Twenty-eight artists are represented in this show including Betye and Alison Saar, Lisa Alvarado, Dave Cole, Judy Hoyt, Larry Ruhl, Flo Oy Wong, Debra Priestly, to name a few.
Rickie Solinger is an independent scholar, curator and author. She received the Prelinger Award from The Coordinating Council of Women in History for her book entitled Beggars and Choosers: How the Politics of Choice Shapes Abortion, Adoption and Welfare in the United States. Solinger is the author of Wake Up Little Susie: Single Pregnancy and Race Before Roe V. Wade (Routledge, 1992) which won the first Lerner-Scott Award given by the Organization of American Historians. She has authored books and scholarly articles on the topics of abortion, women’s reproductive rights and the incarceration of women. She is a founding member of Women United for Justice, Community, and Family, a Boulder, Colorado-based cross-class coalition of women committed to welfare justice, has served on the Boulder County Welfare Review Committee and frequently speaks and writes in the community and elsewhere on matters of poverty, welfare, and economic justice. In addition, Ms. Solinger has also organized art installations and traveling exhibitions that focus on women’s issues and history.
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