The Artist's Book
Central Library, 2nd floor Balcony Cases
The Artist's Book: Exploring text, image and the life of the page
by Katie Baldwin, Lindsey Mears & Katie Murken
From Katie Baldwin:
I am interested in working by hand. My work is created by carving wood, inking the high surfaces of the plate and pressing paper against the inky block in order to transfer the image to the paper, all by hand. I work with both Western woodblock techniques and a traditional Japanese technique called moku hanga.
This time-consuming process stands in contrast to our society where everything is made to be fast, efficient and overproduced. My process is a physical reminder of limitations, while serving as a direct response to the tactile act of making things.
My images create a visual narrative, bearing witness to both the ordinary and extraordinary events of human life. I work in series; my prints complete each other as a non-linear account that attests to the complexity of the human condition. Daily life intersects with themes of poverty, relationships, culture, natural disasters and dumb luck.
My recent work is about my confusion between the personal and the political. It tries to distinguish the point where policy-making and power at the national level collides with the everyday lives of ordinary people.
From Lindsey Mears:
In my art practice I'm seeking to convey moments of communion-those divine glimpses allowed in brief encounters and abstract communications with creatures past and present. I'm interested in the moments when the universe opens, giving us clues to transcend the mundane aspects of everyday living.
The aesthetic intention of my work is closely tied to process. I work primarily in early photographic printing techniques, which, by their nature, yield sometimes unpredictable, often serendipitous results. I enjoy the alchemical play of elements, sunlight and time with my hand and vision for the images. There is space for unexpected interventions during the process.
In my artist's books, I combine layers of images with original and historic texts to create narratives that combine the past and present. My imagery explores humans' place within their natural environments, with the belief that natural elements -- trees, stones and birds -- are equal players in the narrative. My goal is to create an experience for the viewer that has no known provenance. It is an infinite, subtly transformative moment.
From Katie Murken:
My vocabulary ranges from installation to artist's books and works on paper. I use a process that is characterized by the constant search for combinations of form, material and presentation that are capable of capturing the nature of lived experience in a culture that is delicately poised on the brink of disaster.
I have been influenced by the writings of American naturalists and anthropologists who work at the boundary between culture, nature and history, including Loren Eiseley, Edwin Teale and Annie Dillard.
Katie Baldwin is a printmaker who has traveled as an artist in residence in many places, including Japan, Mexico and Cuba. She has received grant funding through several organizations including the Leeway Foundation, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, the Barbara Deming Foundation and the Independence Foundation. She was also the 2008 recipient of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Fellowship. Baldwin has been selected for an upcoming solo exhibition at the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts. She earned a MFA in printmaking and book arts from The University of the Arts.
Lindsey Mears is a book arts instructor in the Art Museum Studio Program at the University of Virginia and at the Virginia Arts of the Book Center. Her work was recently displayed at VisArts in Maryland, the University of Virginia Law Library and in The Poetic Dialogue Project at the Chicago Cultural Center. It is also a part of collections at University of Miami, Long Island University, Yale University, Mellon Bank Headquarters, Rutgers University and University of Wisconsin. She earned a MFA in printmaking and book arts from The University of the Arts and a BA in English and mass communications from James Madison University.
Katie Murken was a lecturer in the Foundations, Crafts and Printmaking departments of the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia. She was a 2008 Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation Creative Fellow and won the 2008 Independence Foundation Fellowship in the Arts. Her work has been displayed at the Visual Arts Society of Texas, the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts and other places. She earned a MFA in printmaking and book arts from The University of the Arts and a BA in printmaking from Penn State University.