Art association

Printmaking takes center stage at the Wickford Art Association | Arts & Living

NORTH KINGSTOWN, RI – Once again, the print appears in the Wickford Art Association’s annual list of events, a signal of its continuing importance through the centuries.

He is believed to have originated in the first century CE during the Han Dynasty in China, but he has continued to generate interest over time, as this WAA exhibit shows through his artistry and enthusiasm.

“I was drawn to linocut printing because of its graphic quality and detailed technical process,” said Denise Marks, who has works on display. “Although reproducible, each print is unique.”

“There are a lot of steps involved in (this form of) printmaking, from creating the image, to transferring the image onto linoleum, to carving and then printing the image, so I appreciate the dedication and hard work it takes to create prints,” said Marks, an artist for over 40 years.

This is the fourth time WAA has released “Push-Pull-Print,” which offers a collection of visual scenes that spark the imagination to question the technique and the artists who practice it. Association officials said 20 artists put 41 pieces up for sale.

“Printmaking has a wide variety of techniques under its umbrella,” said Betsy Zimmerman, judge of this exhibition and who selected the works on display through September 25 in the association’s gallery at 36 Beach St.

“It’s interesting to see the different processes that are exhibited and how the artists have used them. Not only is it possible to choose a favorite image, but also to see if you like woodcuts, linocuts, monotypes, screen printing, etc. “, she said.

Impressions Considered

The prints considered for this exhibition were woodcut, linocut, etching, etching, aquatint, collagraphy, monotype, lithography and serigraphy. They are created by transferring ink through a variety of techniques from a master to a sheet of paper or other material.

Common types of dies include metal etching plates, usually copper or zinc, or polymer plates and other thicker plastic sheets for etching or etching; stone, aluminum or polymer for lithography; wooden blocks for woodcuts and woodcuts; and linoleum for linocuts.

Silk screens or synthetic fabrics are also used for the screen printing process.

Zimmerman said, “New England has a number of excellent printmaking associations that exhibit regularly in addition to open mixed-media exhibitions in museums and galleries. The prints are regularly exhibited in numerous exhibitions.

The WAA sought artists from late June to mid-July to exhibit their works and sell them to the gallery.

First prize in this exhibition went to Sarah Hess for “Ranunculus”, with second prize to Felicia Touhey for “Daffodils I”, third prize to Lorraine Bromley for “Invocation”, and an honorable mention to Denise Marks for “401 and Brad Vaccaro for “Death and Beauty.”

Hess said, “Engraving is such a fun process! I love every step – from designing and hand sculpting my printing blocks to experimenting with all the color possibilities when inking each piece. And from a commercial point of view, I appreciate that the works are, by nature, relatively easy to reproduce while remaining 100% handmade.

Emphasizing this point, Touhey remarked, “I love manipulating materials and their uses and that’s what the engraving process gives me.”

For Bromley, “The spontaneity of painting onto a substrate like glass or Gelli plate and then transferring was always a surprise in textures, mixed colors and different types of paper created interesting results.”

“It’s liberating for me to see what happens with so many different materials,” she added.

Zimmerman remarked that in Hess’s work she appreciated the artistic and professional detail of the colors and their contribution to the overall rendering.

Meanwhile, Touey and Bromley’s one-designs “have a freedom and spontaneity and control of technique that is exciting,” Judge said.

Monotype is a kind of print made by drawing or painting on a smooth, non-absorbent surface. The surface, or matrix, was historically a copper etching plate, but in contemporary work it can vary from zinc or glass to acrylic glass. The image is then transferred to a sheet of paper by pressing the two together, usually using a printing press.

Zimmerman has long been involved with printmaking and has studied the art form in various programs and with several well-known people in the field. She is also an artist member of the Providence Art Club and a member of the Printmakers Network of Southern New England.

For more information on the Wickford Art Association, visit their website,