SAN FRANCISCO, CA: Crown Point Press announces "Four New Etchings by Wayne Thiebaud," the latest release of prints by the California-based artist. On display September 7 to December 3, the exhibition presents four new etchings made by Thiebaud mainly using the direct gravure technique. Rendered on an intimate scale, two prints are portraits of edibles, one contains a figure, and one is a mountain landscape. The selection of prints by Thiebaud demonstrates both style and subject matter characteristic of the artist’s oeuvre.
Thiebaud made his first etchings at Crown Point in 1964, and over six decades he has created more than a hundred prints in its studio. Kathan Brown, the press’s founding director and printer of Thiebaud’s earliest work, recalls him saying: “A piece of pie could call to mind Mom’s apple pie, or pie in the sky, or it could be a triangular shape on a round one.” He told her he wondered if he could bring off the same images that he was painting without using paint. “When you change anything, you change everything,” Thiebaud said.
Thiebaud used direct gravure, drypoint, and chine collé to create his latest prints. Direct gravure, the basic technique of all four prints, begins with the artist drawing or painting on transparent Mylar, which is transferred through a light-sensitive, gelatin ground to a copper plate and then etched with acid. In one print, "Hot Chocolate," crosshatched lines and solid outlines printed in brown combine to create a steaming cup with a dollop of whipped cream. Slender strokes in black form the curve and shadow of a glass jar in "Candy Jar." In "Peak," wispy lines create a sweeping, near-barren hillside partially in shadow. With chine collé, Thiebaud constructs a warm background for a woman standing rigidly behind a cosmetic display case in "Counter Woman."
Wayne Thiebaud was born in Mesa, Arizona, in 1920, and his family in 1921 moved to Long Beach, California, where he grew up. He received his Bachelor of Arts (1951) and his Master of Fine Arts (1953) from the California State University, Sacramento. Thiebaud’s characteristic work presents consumer objects, such as candied apples or sunglasses, as they are seen through shop display windows. He has also become known for his exaggerated, reduced representations of the hilly San Francisco landscape and of broader Northern California terrain. His work is in major museum collections in the United States and Europe, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Tate Modern, London. Thiebaud has received numerous awards, including the UC Davis Chancellor’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Innovation (2016), the Lifetime Achievement Award for Art from the American Academy of Design, New York (2001), and the National Medal of Arts presented by President Clinton (1994). He lives and works in Sacramento, California.
"Four New Etchings by Wayne Thiebaud" is on display in the Crown Point Gallery at 20 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, from September 7 – December 3, 2016. On view concurrently with the exhibition are "John Zurier and Friends" also at the Crown Point Gallery. The gallery hours are Monday 10-5 and Tuesday through Saturday 10-6.