Just like the texts we read throughout our time here at the University of Dallas, the art of printmaking has been around for thousands of years.
Three undergraduates, Claire Schwartz, Emily Duffy, and Molly McNab, two graduate students, and Steven Foutch, professor of printmaking, made a trip to Las Vegas for an international printmaking convention that took place April 4-7. The conference was hosted by the Southern Graphics Council (SGC) at the Bally’s hotel.
The students and Foutch went to look for ideas, because UD will help host the same convention in 2019. All three undergraduates were awarded the UD Experience Award, granting scholarship funding that went toward their trip.
Schwartz, Duffy and McNab are all junior art majors. More specifically, they’re printmakers.
The UD students say they enjoy this art medium because of the teamwork that is produced from such a laborious process, as well as the accidental and distinct characteristics that form on each print.
“[Printmaking] is different because it involves more interaction and teamwork with others than arts like drawing or ceramics,” Duffy said. “It seems like more problems can [result] from the process of printmaking, and more can go wrong. So, when you get it right, or when you encounter an issue, the other people who are with you can help you with your problems or share in your success, and I love that camaraderie.”
Schwartz, on the other hand, revels in printmaking’s product.
“With printmaking, it’s like printing the multiple,” Schwartz said. “You’re making more work than ceramics or sculpture would make at a certain pace. Once you’re done with the prep work, you can print out hundreds of pieces if you wanted.”
The students were able to discover innovative ways to approach the printmaking process and interact with a mixed bag of artists at the Las Vegas conference.
The UD squad of six attended multiple demos, panels and exhibitions all in the name of printmaking. The students showcased their portfolios along with the thousand other variously-skilled printmakers from around the world that were in attendance.
“[I was able to see] a lot of things we have yet to learn here at UD that we can bring back to UD,” Duffy said.
In the spring of 2019, UD along with other schools like Texas Christian University and University of Texas at Dallas will host the SGC conference themselves and are responsible for deciding how they wish to arrange the conference.
Schwartz admitted she can’t wait for next year’s convention.
“I’m definitely excited for [the convention] to be [in Dallas] because it will help promote the school as well as our printmaking program,” Schwartz said.