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Print National opens Saturday at SHY RABBIT

SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts continues its impressive 2009 exhibition schedule with the SHY RABBIT Print National: A National Juried Exhibition, Aug. 29-Oct. 10.

An artists’ reception will be held Saturday from 5-8 p.m.

The 31 fine-art printmakers selected by Barnes for inclusion in the SHY RABBIT Print National are: Tom Baker, N.J.; Daniel Britton, Ariz.; Deborah Bryan, Tenn.; Adrian Chin, Penn.; Deborah Cornell, Mass.; Andrew DeCaen, Texas; James Ehlers, Kans.; Brandon Gardner, Ala.; Christie Ginanni, Colo.; Jon Goebel, S.C.; Karla Hackenmiller, Ohio; Nicole Hand, Ky.; Rachel E. Heberling, Ohio; Dusty Herbig, N.Y.; Yuji Hiratsuka, Ore.; Ivy King, Colo.; Philip Laber, Mo.; Nichole Maury, Mich.; Mike McMann, Wis.; David Moyer, Penn.; Kelly Nelson, Va.; Kathryn Polk, Ariz.; Matt Rebholz, Texas; Amy Schmierbach, Kans.; Jason Shoemaker, Tenn.; Jason Stamper, Mo.; Stephanie Standish, Wis.; Mike Stephens, Texas; Juergen Strunck, Texas; Brad Widness, Minn.; and Melinda Yale, N.Y.

Three intriguing lithographs by Arizona printmaker and art educator, Kathryn Polk will be featured in this exhibition. The works are titled “Non-Indigenous Woman with Logs,” “Non-Indigenous Artist” and ‘No Heaven for Dixie.”

“My work is narrative,” Polk writes in her artist statement.

“I layer humor into that, on closer look, explore alienation and subjugation. As such, my work mirrors how, in real life, we can fail to see past appearances to recognize darker circumstances for what they are.

“ Nonetheless, we endure, navigating desire, expectation and sacrifice. Through all, we strive to survive.

“Lithography is the process I choose to create my work. My fundamental aesthetic is based on the unique quality of line created when drawing with a litho crayon on a stone”, Polk continues.

“Within the world of printmaking I appreciate the contradiction of the original multiple. The work is printed from a matrix and is subtly unique. This duality of opposites reinforces my subject matter based on life experiences that are simultaneously universal and intensely individual.”

This exhibition is free and open to the public.

The juror for this prestigious exhibition is Michael D. Barnes, associate professor of art and head of the printmaking program at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois, where he has taught since 1998.

A total of 308 submissions were received from artists located throughout the U.S., making the jurying process a difficult one.

After a thorough review, Barnes selected a total of 75 pieces for inclusion in the SHY RABBIT Print National, representing 31 fine-art printmakers from 20 states.

Barnes writes in his juror’s statement:

“It was a great pleasure and honor to be invited by Denise and Michael Coffee to jury the inaugural Shy Rabbit Print National, of which I hope their will be many more to come.

“While the practice of creating traditional matrices, historically designed for printing multiple impressions/editions, has broadened to encompass a grander spectrum of conceptual intentions, I am pleased to see the number of artists who continue to find pride in mastering an exceptionally high level of skill in the traditional techniques that have seen decreased popularity in the larger scheme of things in recent years, such as engraving and stone lithography.

“It is gratifying to observe artists finding value in retaining such traditions, while utilizing these tools to new conceptual ends.”

Barnes has received numerous awards, grants, and residencies including an Illinois Arts Council Grant and residencies at the Frans Masereel Centrum, Belgium; The Bemis Center of Contemporary Art, Omaha, Nebraska; the Plains Art Museum, Fargo, North Dakota; and Anchor Graphics at Columbia College, Chicago.

Barnes’ work is included in many collections, including the Museum of Fine Art, Boston; The Royal Museum of Art, Antwerp, Belgium; the City of Vaasa, Finland; The Plains Art Museum, Fargo, North Dakota; and many University and private collections.

For more information on Michael D. Barnes, or to view some of his work, visit www.shyrabbit.com/Barnes.html.

SHY RABBIT Contemporary Arts: Gallery, Studio and Workshops is located at 333 Bastille Drive, two blocks north of U.S. 160, off of North Pagosa Boulevard.  The 4,000 square foot arts facility houses a ceramic studio and fine art gallery, two mixed-media workshops, and two large exhibition spaces.

SHY RABBIT presents four to six exhibitions annually in its expansive 4,000 square-foot arts center and gallery. Workshops are also offered regularly in ceramics and printmaking, instructed by professional artist and SHY RABBIT Creative Director D. Michael Coffee.

The Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday. Visitors are also welcome to attend First Fridays@SHY RABBIT from 4-6 p.m. on the fist Friday of the month through Oct. 10.

These casual open houses provide the perfect opportunity to tour the arts facility at leisure. SHY RABBIT Ceramic Studio Members also provide demonstrations on the potter’s wheel. Light refreshments will be served.

For more information on SHY RABBIT, visit www.shyrabbit.com or call 731-2766. For more information on exhibitions, visit www.shyrabbit.com/Exhibits.html.