Tuesday, March 25, 2008

"Transmission introduces Studio 23"

Sarah Watson,
"I'm Here, You're
There", spitbite
and sugarlift

The Southern Graphics Council Conference is in Richmond this week. The show at Transmission is primarily a forum for Studio 23 to introduce themselves, their work, and their mission.

321 Brook Rd. (between Broad St. and Marshall St.)
Richmond, VA 23225

This show has been up for the month of March, and will be open throughout the Conference's entirety. Hours are Wed, Thurs (11-6), Fri (11-9), and Sat (11-6), or call for appointment.

The members of this group are versatile, extremely talented, and generous. Without them, this community would continue suffering without a resource to learn and/or practice printmaking techniques like etching, lithography, relief (woodcut/linocut), and screenprinting.

Studio 23 will be calling Plant Zero (the artist studios at 0 East 4th St. in the historic district of Manchester) home. Not to confuse you, but they will be hosting an open studio on Saturday, March 29th there from 6-11pm. You can check out their blog here.

Here's what you can expect to see at the show: Etchings, lithographs, woodcuts, linoleum prints, screenprints, and mixed media prints by the members of Studio 23 (Ashley Hawkins, Sarah Watson, Beth Noe, Cindy Eide, Kate Horne) as well as some of their associates (Trudy Benson, Bret Payne, Andy Kozlowski). Also on view are prints by the following artists: Amze Emmons (etching with screenprinting!!), Sam McPheeters, Neil Burke, Ryan Jacob Smith, Matt Wells, Amy Ross (rare collage pieces), Travis Robertson (zines and screenprints), books by Kevin Hooyman... and more!

I interviewed some of the members of Studio 23 -

Q: What process will be required for an artist to use the facilities at Studio 23?

A: At first we said street cred, and knowing not to run a metal spork through the press. Really, anyone interested should email us at studiotwothree@gmail.com and come down to check out the studio. We want to accommodate a wide range of experience and goals, and want to emphasize that all are welcome. We'll tailor tutorials/open studios to individual needs, and are always available for questions and/or visits to the space.

Q: What prompted your efforts to confirm the relevancy of printmaking techniques like etching and lithography? Have you witnessed a decline in the appreciation or understanding of these skills?

A: We're a group of print dorks who want to create a dorkdom (dorkpire?) of printmakers. It is extremely difficult for young, emerging artists to set up and run a printshop individually, as the cost of presses, materials, and maintenance is high. Thus, having a shop available for community use is critical to encouraging young artists to make prints. Prints have their own unique quality, and you just don't see that many of them in galleries. This isn't necessarily indicative of a decline in the appreciation/understanding of traditional printmaking skills, it is simply that facilities for printmaking aren't readily available outside of the university setting. We wish to make prit these facilities available, and create a communal atmosphere as community is such a vital part of any printmaking environment.

Q:Opening this up to the public is an extremely generous gesture. Having a facility like this in Richmond, outside of the confines of the School of the Arts or other institutions is a blessing for someone like me. What made you decide to open Studio 23 in Richmond?

A: We're all recent graduates of VCU's Painting and Printmaking Department, and felt a bit lost after graduating. Without the facilities of VCU, we found it difficult to create work. We started Studio 23 as simply a place for us to work, to get Kate Horne's Talking Horse Press up and running. We've decided to open Studio 23 to the public because we've met many other young artists like ourselves looking for a place to work. We're very excited to provide that place, to increase awareness of printmaking through workshops, and to be a part of Richmond's art community. We see so many people immediately leaving Richmond after graduation, and we think that sucks. We want to contribute to a community of young artists with roots in Richmond who are dedicated to contributing to the arts in the city.

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