The Morgan Presents Printmaking as Resistance Exhibition & Zine Library
Printmaking as Resistance is a zine library and exhibition on view from October 18 to November 16 that will feature local and regional artists who are reinforcing and redefining how printmaking is used as a vessel for resistance and activism today.
Throughout history, printmaking has been used as an accessible tool for communication, raising awareness about social issues and inspiring change. Printmaking as Resistance is a group exhibition featuring contemporary artists who are using posters, zines, and other print-based media as a conduit to inspire thought and provoke social activism.
To preview the exhibition, Jacqueline Bon, marketing and communications coordinator, and Anna Tararova, gallery and artistic opportunities coordinator, discussed it together.
JACQUELINE BON: Where did the idea to include a zine library in this exhibition come from?
ANNA TARAROVA: Zines have long been used as a low-cost way to publish ideas which would not be accepted by mainstream publishers. As a book arts facility, it made sense for the Morgan to include a self-publishing element in a social-justice-themed exhibition.
JB: Can you give the readers of CAN a brief overview of the printmakers featured in this exhibition and what attracted you to their work?
AT: This exhibition features Julia Arredondo, April Bleakney, Liz Born, Amirah Cunningham, Angela Davis Fegan, Eric J. Garcia, Terence Hammonds, Hoofprint Editions, Todd Irwin, Nicole Marroquin, Meshwork Press, Pat Perry, Kasey Ramirez, Aaron Regal, Corinne Teed, Breanne Trammell, and Tara Zanzig.
A few artists to look forward to (in no specific order): Liz Born is a Chicago-based artist. Working primarily in relief and lithography, she illustrates the communion between animals and human-animals. Liz has taught relief, screenprinting, and intaglio at Spudnik Press, the Hyde Park Art Center, and Marwen. She is a co-founder of Hoofprint, a Chicago-based printmaking studio whose goal is to edition print-based work that represents a collaboration between the artist and a team of skilled printers. Many of the editions they have created are represented in the Printmaking as Resistance exhibition.
Pat Perry is an artist from Michigan who writes and makes pictures through careful and cautious observation. He often works itinerantly, and lives in Detroit. He worked with LAND studio in 2016 to complete a mural in Cleveland in preparation for the RNC.
Meshwork Press was founded by artist and teacher, Haylee Ebersole in October 2018, with the hopes of creating a space to teach her love of printmaking to kids in her neighborhood. Kyrie Bushaw, with a background in design and business management, joined the budding venture in June 2019. Together they make up the heart and head, brains and brawn of Meshwork Press, based out of a tiny storefront in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania. They currently partner with the Wilkinsburg Youth Project (WYP) in teaching screen printing workshops out of their space.
Julia Arredondo is an artist, writer and budding entrepreneur. Originally from Corpus Christi, Texas, she now resides in Chicago. Julia is a self-described “Latinx-Italo gal trying to find a financially stable and ethically-produced position in the world.” Julia is in the process of growing multiple business entities (Curandera Press, CopCharmer Avon, and Good Academic) where she explores marketing, consumer psychology and art-based design through the production of multiples.
JB: Submissions to our “Call for Zines” have been rolling in and remain open until October 11! What has the response been so far?
AT: So far, zinesters from Cleveland, Chicago and Pittsburgh have been sending and bringing in their publications. They are all extremely different, which will make for an exciting assemblage of material for our zine library.
JB: When I contemplate Printmaking as Resistance, I reflect on the civil rights movement and the artists who used printmaking as a medium to express urgent responses and imagined possibilities to issues of social justice. Do you see any similarities between this movement and our upcoming exhibition?
AT: Printmaking and self-publishing have been used as tools of social change since paper and printing methods have become easily available. The artists of Printmaking as Resistance use their work to address injustices and issues they care deeply about. It’s the good kind of propaganda.
JB: There are so many headlines in the news, it can be difficult to keep up with. I often feel overwhelmed and at a loss for what actions to take on an individual level. I value zines because I find that they have the ability to break through this barrier and inspire direct action in a way that the mainstream media cannot. What role do you believe that zines play?
AT: Organized media networks don’t have any freedom in the way they present news. Their format is too rigid, and they cannot show any vulnerability, or they will lose funding. They are a business trying to survive in a cis, white capitalist society with corporations running everything. Self-published zines exist outside of this world. Their goal is not to profit, but to disperse information from people of diverse viewpoints and backgrounds.
JB: Living in a hyper-connected digital world means we have more access to information than ever before, but not necessarily that we’re engaging in real-life conversations about the information we’re consuming. What do you hope to accomplish by getting the Cleveland community together for opening night?
AT: I hope this exhibition contributes to the growth of a self-publishing scene and gets Clevelanders excited about making their voices heard. There are many amazing local and Midwest self-publishing events and resources that more people need to experience to see first-hand.
The Morgan Art of Papermaking Conservatory & Educational Foundation
1754 East 47th Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44103