Keynote SpeakerWillie Cole

Willie Cole is best known for assembling and transforming ordinary domestic and used objects such as irons, high-heeled shoes, hair dryers, and other discarded appliances and hardware into imaginative and powerful works of art and installations. He refers to himself as a perceptual engineer, transforming ordinary objects into extraordinary forms. Mr. Cole’s print-based work includes completed editions in lithography, woodcut, and digital techniques. According to Wendy Weitman, “His most common printmaking practice, scorching, reflects a sculptor’s uniquely physical perspective. [It is] a transfer branding process that constitutes the essence of printmaking…”

Willie Cole grew up in Newark, New Jersey. He attended the Boston University School of Fine Arts, received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York in 1976, and continued his studies at the Art Students League of New York from 1976-79. Mr. Cole’s work is found in numerous private and public collections and museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art; the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, New York; and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Willie Cole is the recipient of many awards including the David C. Driskell Prize, the first national award to honor and celebrate contributions to the field of African American art and art history, established by the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia.

 Keynote Speaker: Nicola Lopez

Born in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Nicola López currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.  Through her work in printmaking, drawing, and installation, López describes and reconfigures our contemporary—primarily urban—landscape.  Her interest in describing ‘place’ stems from traveling, studying, and working in other countries, including Mexico, Peru, and Morocco, and from her undergraduate studies as an anthropology major at Columbia University, where she received her BA in 1998.  In 2002 López attended the Skowhegan School for Painting and Sculpture in Maine, and in 2004, received her MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University, as well as an MFA Grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation. Her work has been exhibited throughout the USA and internationally.  It has been included in group exhibitions at several galleries and museums, including: the MoMA in New York; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in Los Angeles; the Museo Rufino Tamayo in Mexico City; and the Denver Art Museum in Denver, Colorado. López’s work has recently been shown in two solo exhibitions during the spring of 2011: “Structural Detours” at Pace Prints Chelsea in New York and “Marañas” at Arroniz Arte Contemporáneo Gallery in Mexico City.

This lecture is free and open to the public, and made possible by a generous donation from the Sandra Garrard Memorial Lecture Series and Tulane University.

Image Credit: Structural Detour 6: Chain-link Claw grasps the Knot buried in Fences, 2011; woodcut on paper, mylar, reflective mylar, collage; 48″ x 61.5″

Photo Credit: Carlin Mayer



Printmaker Emeritus Award
: David Driesbach 

Born in Wausau, Wisconsin, in 1922, David Driesbach spent his time during the
Second World War as a Marine in the Pacific Theatre. Upon returning state side, he studied painting and printmaking at the University of Illinois, Beloit College, the University of Wisconsin, and The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. In 1951, he received his MFA from The University of Iowa under the tutelage of Mauricio Lasansky. He also studied with prominent printmaker Stanley William Hayter who introduced him to viscosity printing.

Mr. Driesbach worked for thirty-nine years as an educator from 1952 to 1991 and has been exhibiting art since 1949.  Having taught at numerous institutions such as Hendrix College, Conway, Arkansas; 
Iowa State College, Cedar Falls, Iowa; 
Millikin University, Decatur, Illinois; and Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, he spent the majority of his time at Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, Illinois, from1964 until 1991, when he retired from academic life and was appointed Distinguished Emeritus Professor.

Mr. Driesbach’s paintings, drawings, bronzes, and prints have been exhibited in more than 250 one-man and 500 group shows including: The Museum of Modern Art, NYC; The Brooklyn Museum; The Chicago Art Institute; and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. More than 300 public collections contain his work such as The University of Notre Dame, Fredonia State College of New York, and The Butler Museum. His works have shown in numerous International Competitions. Among them are the 11th International Exhibition of Graphic Arts, Ljubljana, Yugoslavia; Premio Internationale Biella Per L’ Incisione, Milan, Italy; and the Seventh British International Invitational in Bradford, England.

David Diresbach has a lifetime of artistic endeavors and is well respected as an educator, having instilled strong commitment in an impressively large group of students. He is an internationally known expert and innovator in the printmaking field, having helped create technical advances in color viscosity printing.


Lifetime Achievement Award: Esther Sparks

Esther Sparks received a B.A. from the University of Chicago in 1951.  Working as a volunteer in Peoria, Illinois, she curated the opening exhibition of Peoria’s Lakeview Museum, 200 Years of American Painting. After moving to Chicago, she earned an M.A. in art history in 1968 and a Ph.D. in 1970 from Northwestern University with the thesis, A Biographical Dictionary of Painters and Sculptors in Illinois 1808-1945.

In 1970, Ms. Sparks joined the Prints and Drawings Department at the Art Institute of Chicago, where she curated and wrote catalogues for departmental exhibitions such as, Three New England Watercolor Painters, Jacques Villon, and Etchings by Jim Dine.  For the Institute, she was also curator for two Chicago and Vicinity Exhibitions, one which traveled to seven other institutions.  She served on the Illinois Arts Council  from 1965 – 1970, curating the traveling exhibitions, Painters and Sculptors in Illinois 1820-1945 and Illinois Sculptors, and served on the Fine Arts Review Committee for the State of Illinois Center from 1980 – 1984.  She was also elected to the Senate of Monmouth College and Art Advisory Panel of Beloit College.

She has contributed much to the field of printmaking with her service on the Prints and Books Fellowship Panel of the National Endowment, the Art Print Review Panel for the Internal Revenue Service, and as a Reviewer for the National Endowment for the Humanities, Director of the Print Council of America, and other committees.  In 1989, Abrams published her book Universal Limited Art Editions:  the First 25 Years.  Other publications include essays for the Whitney Museum’s American Folk Painters of Three Centuries (1979) as well as Historic Preservation, Museum Studies, American Art Review, and The Henry Ford Museum Herald. In 1979 she was awarded a three-month travelling fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts.  She has also received fellowships from the Luce Fund and the Rothman Foundation.

She taught at the School of the Art Institute from 1977-1985, also teaching evening classes at Northwestern and lecturing at numerous institutions including: the Smithsonian Institution, the Boston Museum Fine Arts, the Milwaukee Art Museum, and the University of Nebraska. In 1985, she left the Art Institute to direct the W. Graham Arader III Gallery in Chicago and taught at Valparaiso University from 1995 to 2007.  From 2005 to 2009 she taught in the School for Continuing Studies at Northwestern.  Since 1996, she has taught several courses in the Art Department of The University of Mississippi, as well as an introductory art history course in the University’s Honors College.

 Image Credit and caption: Hands of Larry Rivers and Frank O’Hara, working on their book Stones, 1957. Photo Credit:  Hans Namuth


Lifetime Achievement Award: Joan Mitchell

Joan Mitchell was born in Chicago in 1925. After graduating from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1947, she was awarded a Ryerson Traveling Fellowship, which took her to France for a year in 1948 – 1949, and it was there that her paintings moved toward abstraction. Returning to New York, she participated in the famous “9th Street Show” in 1951, and soon established a reputation as one of the leading younger American Abstract Expressionist painters. She exhibited regularly in New York throughout the next four decades and maintained close friendships with many New York School painters and poets.

In 1955 she began dividing her time between New York and France, and in 1968 she settled in Vétheuil, a small town in the countryside outside of Paris, where she worked continuously until her death in 1992. During the almost 50 years of her painting life, as Abstract Expressionism was eclipsed by successive styles, Mitchell’s commitment to the tenets of gestural abstraction remained firm and uncompromising.

Mitchell gave personal support to many young artists who came to stay with her at Vétheuil— sometimes for just one night, sometimes for an entire summer. Correspondence in her papers reveals that this generosity often had a life-changing impact on those that spent time with her. Her generosity in her own lifetime continued after her death with the formation of the Joan Mitchell Foundation, called for in her will in order to create support and recognition for individual artists. In addition, the Foundation mission includes the promotion and preservation of her legacy, which includes her remarkable body of work, her papers, including correspondence and photographs, and other archival materials related to her life and work.


Excellence in Teaching Award: Kimberly Arp

Kimberly was born and raised in Northern Michigan. He went to Grand Valley State College for his BFA degree and received his MFA from Indiana University in 1977.  He is a professor of art at Louisiana State University and has taught printmaking there since August of 1977.  Mr. Arp has been in over two hundred one-man, two-person, group, juried, and invitational exhibitions all over the United States, as well as, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Italy, and Australia.

Speaking on his art, Kimberly Arp states, “For many years I have used photographs as a visual resource along with my sketchbook and in the past 5 years or so I have used imagery transferred directly from my photographs into my work. I use Xerox transfer processes, photo lithography, photo intaglio and screen printing as means of incorporating my photographic imagery into my art work.  Most recently I have been scanning and greatly enlarging my photographs and printing them out on rag paper as digital inkjet images.  Once in that state, I print photo and hand drawn lithographic, intaglio or serigraphic images over the top of them to create pieces that are hybrids of ‘photo reality and hand drawn invention.’

“I study Alchemy, the Voodoo and Santeria religions, and Folk Art, as well as mythology and magic, all of which influence my work a great deal.  My work is equally influenced by a sense of the ‘spiritual’ in a place, be it the Grand Canyon, stone circles in Scotland, a lightning storm, or as in the case of many prints, [the] graveyards and churches in Scotland.”


Mentorship Award: William Kitchens

William Kitchens is currently an Associate Professor at Loyola University New Orleans where he teaches book arts and all printmaking media, including lithography, intaglio, relief, and serigraphy.  He received his BFA in painting and printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1975, and his MFA in printmaking from The University of Georgia in 1984. His books and prints have been exhibited in numerous one-person, group, and juried exhibitions throughout the United States and Europe. He has works in the permanent collections of the National Museum of American Art in Washington DC; the Whitney Museum in New York; the Kennedy Museum of Art in Columbus, Ohio; and the New Orleans Museum of Art.



Excellence in Advocacy Award: Phyllis McGibbon

Phyllis McGibbon is the current Director of Studio Art at Wellesley College where she teaches printmaking, drawing and inter-media courses. Before moving to the Boston area, she taught at Pomona College, The Claremont Graduate University, Wesleyan University and the University of Wisconsin- Madison, where she earned her BFA and MFA degrees. Awards for her work include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation, the   WESTAF Regional NEA, Art Matters, Inc and the Howard Foundation at Brown University. Her most recent series, glimpses and ruminations, considers patterns of artistic practice and cultural tourism.


Honorary Member of the Council: April Katz

Katz earned her MFA from Arizona State, teaches printmaking at Iowa State, and is faculty advisor to the ISU print club that organizes the annual, International Postcard Print Exchange. From 2004 – 2006, Katz was president of SGC International. Katz exhibits extensively throughout the United States and is included in the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri; the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University; and the Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C. Katz was featured in a 2001 article in Contemporary Impressions. She has presented for the Southern Graphics Council, Society for Photographic Education, International Visual Literacy Association and International Impact Printmaking Conferences.



Honorary Member of the Council: Anita Jung

Anita Jung is an associate professor at the University of Iowa. She previously taught printmaking, drawing and installation courses at Illinois State University, Ohio University and University of Tennessee. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Arizona State University where she majored in painting and drawing. The Master of Fine Arts was awarded to her from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she worked with Bill Weegee as a printer at Off Jones Road and Tandem Press. She has been involved with MAPC and SGC International for many years as a participant, officer, and host. She has also participated in the international IMPACT conferences in Poznan, Poland; Berlin, Germany; and Tallinn, Estonia.


Vendors Award: Takach Press

Takach Press Corporation was founded in 1975 with the production of lithography presses.  As 2012 marks Takach’s 37th year of production, they are now one of the finest sources for the fine art printmaker — whether professional or novice– providing some of the best equipment and supplies available. Currently, 16 people make up the production staff dedicated to high standards and quality customer satisfaction.  With such standards, the number of customers tally in the thousands.



Publishers Award: Cannonball Press

Cannonball Press is run by two people: Martin Mazorra and Mike Houston. Based in Brooklyn, New York, Mazorra and Houston have been publishing relief cuts and screenprints, and selling them for 20 dollars each, both online and in organized exhibitions since 1999. From the start, Cannonball Press’ mission has been to produce high-quality, affordable one-pass black and white prints by young artists, artists who otherwise do not have a venue for their work, and those who primarily work in other mediums and have yet to experience the power of printmaking. They are dedicated to a straightforward, one-pass procedure and a mission to produce democratic, affordable black and white prints.

Around 2004, in addition to publishing, Mazorra and Houston started to make large scale collaborative woodcut prints by themselves and with other artists, including: prints on canvas, sculptures, performances, and installations. The work they’ve produced has taken them to Estonia, South Africa, Maui, Germany, and Denmark, as well as numerous cities nationwide. Mazorra and Houston have lectured at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, and were named US Artist Ford Fellows in 2009.

All of Cannonball Press’ current prints can be seen and purchased at cannonballpress.com.


SGC International Graduate Student Fellowship Award: Aaron S. Coleman

Aaron S. Coleman is an artist, printmaker, and MFA candidate at Northern Illinois University. He received his BFA from Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Indiana. Aaron is an organizer of international portfolio exchanges and exhibitions as well as an intense researcher in the field of printmaking. His recent studio practices have led him to the mezzotint technique and he is beginning a series consisting of 10 large-scale mezzotint prints. He has exhibited works nationally and internationally including an exhibition at the Liu Haisu Art Museum in Shanghai, China. This summer his work will be exhibited in the 6th International Printmaking Biennial of Douro in Alijo, Portugal. (www.aaroncolemanprintmaking.com)

Image Credit: Different Day, Mezzotint, lithography, and silkscreen; 11” x 15.”


SGC International Undergraduate Student Fellowship Award: Ryan Kangail

Ryan Kangail is a nationally exhibited artist based in northern Illinois.  Originally introduced to the printmaking mediums at Elgin Community College, he’s now completing his final year of study towards his Bachelors of Fine Arts in printmaking at Northern Illinois University.  Kangail’s work derives from an interest in self-investigation related to connections between personal experiences and issues concerning contemporary culture. He expresses this through his depictions of forlorn environments and figures.

Image Credit: Lost Place I