October 2016 Solo Show
by Mike Hagan
Exhibit available 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday thru Saturday
September 28 thru October 29
Click here for details of Mike’s October, 2016 solo show.
My matrix is my brush. Printmaking matrices (blocks, stones, plates, and screens) are complex tools. However, the essential purposes of these tools are to acquire and hold pigmented materials and to apply them to substrates (e.g., paper). Thus, these tools are exactly equivalent to brushes, pens, and pencils, which are also graphic tools used to acquire and hold various pigments and apply them to canvas, paper, etc.
Between dot and not
In making a pen and ink drawing there are choices between putting solid marks on the paper or leaving the paper completely clear, i.e., the artist can scumble, cross-hatch, and stipple. These are essentially half-toning techniques to get “grey” values between pure pigment and pure paper. Current technologies bring new precision, speed, and opportunities to the very similar role of the half-tone in hand-pulled printmaking. Half-tones not only carry tonal changes in printed images but also, when apparent, are intrinsically interesting repeated forms and expose the printmaking process to the viewer.
Repetition, repetition, repetition
Repetition, critical to composition, is a primary strength of printmaking. If you want to repeat textures, patterns, and imagery in precise and timely ways, then you want to be printing. New technologies allow for precision and speed in printing while still retaining the major advantages of the handpulled print.
There and here, then and now, and metaphors
My screenprinted images refer to other printmaking methods (e.g., textiles, woodblock), earlier times, and other cultural contexts (e.g., Japanese ukiyo e, Renaissance, and Pop Art). Now, traditional printmaking combined with new technologies can efficiently and precisely employ traditional and custom half-tones, textures, tessellations, patterns, and unique, flat, complex, or “exploded” colors. Visually apparent half-tones in my prints (i.e., dots, lines, and custom shapes) are also metaphors for commercial printmaking, for current culture, and for new technology.
The main advantage for me in handpulled printing is total control over color and inks. Commercial printing inks (i.e., process cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) do not give sufficient choice and control to printmakers who are focused on pure, flat, non-simulated colors, on color itself, on modifying ink characteristics, and on using alternative printmaking materials (e.g., metallics).
Recent Printmaking Activities
- Member, Current Vice President and previous President (2006 to 2009), Washington Printmakers Gallery
- Member, Washington Print Club
- Board Member, Washington Print Foundation
- Contributing Artist, Glover Park “Callbox” Project
- Certificate in Printmaking, The Corcoran College of Art and Design, December, 1995.
- Post Certificate work with Georgia Deal and Dennis O’Neil through the Corcoran.
- Exhibitions with Corcoran faculty, students, and others in the Washington DC printmaking community in annual Printmaking Portfolio group shows 1995 2002.
- National Small Works, juried exhibition, Washington Printmakers Gallery, Washington D.C., August, 2006.
- “60/60,” solo exhibition, September, 2008, Washington Printmakers Gallery.
Prints Held, Community Activities
- Prints are held by the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Gallery K estate, the U.S. Library of Congress, and private collectors.
- Prints have been a part of local community, national, and international initiatives including fund-raising efforts for Glover Park’s Stoddert Elementary School, American Diabetes Association, and Health Volunteers Overseas.
- All artist proceeds from sales of Michael Hagan’s prints through Washington Printmakers Gallery go directly to HEALTH VOLUNTEERS OVERSEAS, a non profit organization improving global health through education.
WWW.HVOUSA.ORG (202) 296-0928.
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