International Print Center New York presents
EDGE OF VISIBILITY
Curated by Susan Tallman in partnership with Art in Print
October 4–December 19, 2018
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 4, 6–8pm; press & members preview 5–6pm
(New York, NY – September 12, 2018) International Print Center New York (IPCNY) is pleased to present Edge Visibility, curated in conjunction with the September–October issue of the scholarly journal Art in Print by its editor-in-chief, Susan Tallman. The issue focuses on atworks that are purposely and strategically hard to see; since such works are by nature extremely difficult to reproduce, the accompanying exhibition provides the opportunity to experience them in all their elusive and evasive presence. Among the more than 50 works on view are prints from the 17th century to the present—laborious micro-engravings, subtle watermarks, and evanescent images printed with UV-reactive inks.
The material properties of specific print techniques are critical to how these works court and tease the eye. Chris Ofili’s multi-layered, opalescent etching portfolio Black Shunga, 2008–15 relies on threadlike, nearly imperceptible lines, as do Walid Raad’s white-on-white line etchings for Views from Inner to Outer Compartments (2013), though in quite a different context. Meanwhile, the abstract expressionist painter Boris Margo used a technique of his own invention, “cellocut,” in inkless reliefs.
Such visual hurdles work to make visitors conscious of the act of looking; at IPCNY magnifying glasses, iPad digital enlargers, and special lighting are provided for enhanced viewing. Rare historical works of virtuosic micrography by Johann Michael Püchler, Levi David van Gelder, and William Pratt all create images from minuscule texts, while Matthew Kenyon and Douglas Easterly’s Notepad (2007) and Fiona Banner’s Top Gun (1996) bring the tradition into the present, using micrographic text to present vast amounts of information on, respectively, “blank” yellow notepads and a small print formatted like a movie screen. Director Judy Hecker captures the prominence of micrography in Edge of Visibility, saying, "IPCNY is thrilled to be partnering with Art in Print – two organizations dedicated to advancing the field of print – and especially on a topic where text and looking are welcomed partners, and are inextricably intertwined in many of the works.”
The screenprints of Ad Reinhardt (1966) and the lithographs of Susan York (2015) require a different form of visual attention—time spent letting the eye accommodate itself to minimal distinctions in hue and surface reflectivity.
“Viewing,” says guest curator Susan Tallman, “is at the heart of this exercise—what it means to see, physically, metaphysically, socially, and politically.” In Philippe Parreno’s Fade to Black (2005), visibility and its opposite take on intimations of mortality: in normal light, the prints appear to be solid rectangles of color; when the lights are switched off, however, phosphorescent images bloom, only to die off into darkness until they are recharged.
Low visibility acts as a metaphor for racial invisibility in a number of works. Samuel Levi Jones and Kerry James Marshall depict black figures against black backgrounds, recasting a societal refusal to see as an optical challenge to seeing. Glenn Ligon, revisiting printing plates from an earlier etching project, trades black-on-black for beige-on-cream, to make a nuanced point about social and chromatic contrast. Black-on- black also appears as a strategy for memorializing traumatic events. In their 2001 New Yorker cover, Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly marked the shock of 9/11 through black silhouettes of the Twin Towers against a black background; more recently Megan Foster’s screenprint of a black flag at half mast against a foreboding charcoal sky captures the fears for democracy many felt in the wake of the 2016 Presidential election.
Fiona Banner, Barbara Bloom, Jacques Callot, Megan Foster, Levi David van Gelder, Samuel Levi Jones, William Kentridge, Matthew Kenyon & Douglas Easterly, Glenn Ligon, Christian Marclay, Boris Margo, Kerry James Marshall, Chris Ofili, Philippe Parreno, William Pratt, Johann Michael Püchler, Walid Raad, Ad Reinhardt, Art Spiegelman & Françoise Mouly, Timorous Beasties (Alistair McAuley & Paul Simmons), and Susan York
Thursday, October 11, 6–8pm: artist Samuel Levi Jones in conversation with Randy Cohen for Person Place Thing radio show, with musical guest Tomas Rodriguez.
Thursday, October 25, 5–6pm: Print Week exhibition tour with curator Susan Tallman.
Saturday, October 27, 1–4pm: acTEEvism: T-shirt screenprinting workshop with artists including Megan Foster at IPCNY’s PRINTFEST
Thursday, November 1, 6–8pm: Publishing on the Edge: Making the Invisible Visible panel discussion with master printers Jacob Samuel (Edition Jacob Samuel, Santa Monica, CA) on Walid Raad, Greg Burnet (Burnet Editions, NY) on Glenn Ligon, and Craig Zammiello (Two Palms, NY) on Chris Ofili
Tuesday, December 4, 6–8pm: Text + Image: Historical Micrography of Johann Michael Püchler and David Levi van Gelder in Context. Gallery talk by Freyda Spira, Associate Curator, Drawings and Prints, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and David Wachtel, independent scholar
For more information or to reserve your spot, visit www.ipcny.org/visibility.
The accompanying issue of Art in Print will be for sale at IPCNY during the run of the exhibition, from October 4 to December 19, 2018. Issues also may be purchased by calling IPCNY at 212.989.5090 or online at www.artinprint.org. The issue includes an annotated illustrated checklist of all works in the exhibition, as well as critical essays and interviews that provide deeper insights into the works and strategies on display by authors Elleree Erdos, Faye Hirsch, Brian T. Leahy, Kate McCrickard, Leah Ollman, Freyda Spira, and Johnny Plastini. Discounted subscriptions to Art in Print and IPCNY membership packages are available online through www.ipcny.org/join, and in person or by calling IPCNY.
ABOUT THE CURATOR
Susan Tallman is the editor-in-chief of the international journal and website Art in Print. An art historian, she has written extensively on the history and culture of the print, as well as on issues of authenticity, reproduction, and multiplicity. Her writing has appeared in Art in America, Parkett, Public Art Review, Art on Paper, Print Quarterly, Arts Magazine, and many other publications. Her books include The Contemporary Print: From Pre-Pop to Postmodern (Thames and Hudson), The Collections of Barbara Bloom (Steidl), and numerous museum catalogues. She currently teaches in the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the Art Institute of Chicago.
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GROUP AND SCHOOL VISITS may be arranged with advanced booking by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or 212.989.5090.
International Print Center New York (IPCNY) is New York’s flagship non-profit arts institution dedicated to the innovative presentation of prints by emerging, established, national, and international artists. Founded in 2000, the print center is a vibrant hub and exhibition space located in New York’s Chelsea gallery district. IPCNY’s artist-centered approach engages the medium in all its varied potential, and includes guest-curated exhibitions that present dynamic, new scholarship as well as biannual New Prints open-call exhibitions for work created in the last twelve months. A lively array of public programs engages audiences more deeply with the works on display. A 501(c)(3) institution, IPCNY depends on foundation, government, and individual support, as well as members’ contributions to fund its programs.
Support for all programs and exhibitions at IPCNY is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; and by Foundations including: Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc., the Milton & Sally Avery Arts Foundation, Inc., Deborah Loeb Brice Foundation, The Greenwich Collection Ltd., Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Jockey Hollow Foundation, PECO Foundation, the Sweatt Foundation, the Thompson Family Foundation, the New York Community Trust, and the Wege Foundation; along with major individual support.
LOCATION & HOURS FOLLOW US
508 West 26th Street, 5A FB: International Print Center New York
between 10th and 11th Avenues Twitter: @ipcny Gallery hours Tuesday–Saturday 11am–6pm Instagram: @ipcny Free and open to the public,
and wheelchair accessible
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