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  • ItemOpen Access
    Julia Wirtz: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2024) Wirtz, Julia, artist
    The artist's statement: I am an artist and printmaker from Denver, Colorado. A majority of my recent body of work is centered around the complexities and nuances of the grieving process. My work aims to honor my late best friend, and express the complicated emotions surrounding the death of my absent father in a way words can't. Examining the differences between these two grieving processes is something I find fascinating and has helped me make sense of my emotions. Art is, and always has been therapeutic for me, which is reflected in the content of my recent works. Printmaking allows me to link art and emotion together as the complexities the printmaking processes provide mirror the complexities of human emotion. Many of the printmaking processes I employ leave room for error and can be unpredictable. The unpredictable nature of these processes is something I’m especially drawn to, as it often transforms my vision in ways I could never anticipate. Unpredictability is a cornerstone of the human experience, and I appreciate the way this is reflected in my process. My goal is to connect with my viewer and give them a look into my soul. Additionally, I hope they take the time to contemplate their own grief, or emotions they have been hiding. I hope the vulnerability my work provides encourages the viewer to be more vulnerable in their own lives.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Peyton Farnum: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2024) Farnum, Peyton, artist
    The artist's statement: "Back From Burnout" is a multi-media representation of resilience through the obstacles of daily life. Amidst the chaos of society, art was supposed to provide an outlet for worldly frustrations. So why was making art so hard? A myriad of factors led me to a seemingly immovable state of compassion fatigue, limiting my creativity and ability to do the art I love. In facing the weight of expectations from others, physical limitations from overuse, mental health fluctuations, and a major state of burnout, art became a chore. An assignment. A thing to just "get done". With these obstacles in mind, "Back From Burnout" explores the complexity of hardship in the artist/human experience, in my hopes of learning how to fall in love with creating once more. "Back From Burnout" is a story of acknowledgment, acceptance, and optimism.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Julianna Shrode: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2024) Shrode, Julianna, artist
    The artist's statement: My work explores the two modern facets of design: the digital and the analog. I like to play with the marriage between the screen, and the press, and the movement between the two. My perfectionism in Graphic Design contrasted with the organic nature of Printmaking combine to effectively and entertainingly visually communicate. I use digital processes such as procreate and Adobe Illustrator to create my images. Then, moving into the traditional print space, turning those images into relief carvings and photosensitive exposures. Occasionally, then scanning those prints back into the digital spaces to further manipulate. My goal with any piece I produce is to relay a message to my audience with an aesthetically pleasing approach. I use Printmaking to embrace the imperfections embedded within it and implement that liberty into my design. I believe Printmaking is the predecessor to Graphic Design, and the knowledge of one immensely supplements the other.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Brian Raftery: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2023) Raftery, Brian, artist
    The artist's statement: My work as a printmaker is centered around my fascination with the overlaps between the digital and analog world. Many printmaking processes that I explore within my practice have allowed for these overlaps to exist. The processes that have enthralled me the most have been cyanotype and laser-engraved woodblock/stone. These processes both allow the artist to print digital imagery at high resolution, and this can be combined with other processes to create interesting results.There is a parallel between these processes and the content within my work: a focus on the relationship between the digital and the non-digital. Technology is something that I grew up with in a way that the generations that came before me didn't. My relationship with this technology has shaped me in very complex ways, and analyzing this connection has inspired me to create work that references nostalgic imagery that many people from my generation grew up with. My process involves the digital manipulation of this imagery that I am able to deconstruct even more through post-digital processes (like cyanotype and laser-engraved wood or stone).Combining the many printmaking processes that I have learned thus far together is a very advanced skill that I spent a long time mastering most recently in order to take my work to the next level. This process makes me question my own relationship with technology, which I have even taken into practice as a Graphic Designer. Overall, my printmaking practice has pushed me to think outside the box when I am creating any artwork, regardless of whether the work is for a professional setting, or it is just a passion project.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Cameron Douglas: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2023) Douglas, Cameron, artist
    The artist's statement: The origin of this series is built upon the double standard society has created surrounding one's expression of anger. Men are often allowed and in some cases encouraged, to convey verbal and physical anger openly, while women are expected to suppress or express anger in a more socially acceptable manner. The double standard of expression not only perpetuates a gender stereotype but discourages women from expressing their authentic feelings of self. Women who are innately assertive and direct are commonly feared, whereas their counterparts who exude the same behavior are deemed as inspirational. This marginalized perspective has created an environment at which a man's true expression of self is praised at the demise of a woman.This semantic double standard has created a deeply rooted feeling of generational grief. Regardless of status, race, and age all women, including myself, have endured the pain of being stereotyped solely based upon what resides underneath our clothes. Visually expressing rage is by no means a nuanced idea, however medias' capitalization of portraying a woman with emotions as "hysterical" has created a market saturated with inaccurate and pathetic depiction of "feminine rage". I was fortunate to be raised by a woman who valued honesty, authenticity and provided guidance to becoming a strong independent woman. As a woman leading a life of honesty and authenticity labeled me as a "scary bitch". Thankfully my mother has taught me to not keel over at the stereotypes that have been instilled upon me. Rather respond with a smile and a "flock of these"; referring to the act of twirling fingers followed by two middle fingers. As a woman who is well versed in being a bitch, I am passionate about creating a body of work which juxtaposes the media's diluted depiction of "feminine rage". Blending the world of performance and print is intended to symbolize the repetition of the gender discrimination seen throughout history. The representation of authentic expression intends to break down the door which has withheld feminine rage from society for years. Within this body of work I strive to inspire other women, like myself, to embrace their authentic selves while attempting to palliate the generational pain we as women have experienced for centuries.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Tyler Wilson: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Wilson, Tyler, artist
    The artist's statement: I create paintings and prints with busy compositions that employ definitive strokes and line, emotive color, and thoroughly layered textures. Using these physical techniques, my large-scale, mixed media artworks portray the fatigue of everyday rapidity, the struggle of existence, and the interactivity between individuals. To do this, my paintings employ ordinary materials of everyday use that promote decay, variability, and the "human" in the craftsmanship of my work. I've always been attracted to the cracks in the paint rather than the painting. I would go into museums and look at the way the paint would decay on old oil paintings. I would bring this lens of the imperfect out into the streets and notice all the dirt on the ground, the lichen growing on the walls, and the slight differences of texture in the concrete. My main themes revolve around the ordinary person, perfect imperfections, and the blessings of mediocrity. I connect dirtiness, normality and the typical person together to create a less perfect art that doesn't pander to the mediocre, but attempts to mimic it. From my perspective, the less perfect a piece is; the more interesting it becomes. The flaws and imperfections of an object is what makes that object what it is, and to idealize an object is to make what it is not. The idea of imperfection is presented in two ways: 1) the treatment of the materials (physicality), and 2) the narrative of the piece (informativeness). Both elements are key to having an interesting artwork because they lean on each other and cater to different viewers, which increases the piece's accessibility and viewer retention. The texture draws the viewer in close while the narrative makes them take a step back. My colour palette sways towards red and warm colours because they are more violent and expressive. The technique of my mark making is loose with a brush and harsh with a palette knife. Recently, I've picked up the practice of a cycle of addition-removal-addition which allows me to be subtractive with painting and create dirtier-looking images. In addition, most of my works are large because I want the viewer to be absorbed into the piece rather than feel like they are looking through a window. My work would almost shrink if placed into a frame which is why I prefer to keep them unframed. My practice is inspired by countless art historical figures such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Robert Rauschenberg, Jean Dubuffet, Barnett Newman, Sigmar Polke, Anselm Kiefer, and many more that I cannot list for the sake of brevity. I think perhaps the biggest inspiration is Jean Dubuffet and his idea of the art brut, and since I am already too corrupted in the art historical world, I can only emulate Jean Dubuffet's vision and attempt to marry art culturel and art brut. I put a contemporary spin of this and address hopelessness, loss of identity, and the creation and destruction of meaning in ordinary people while creating art that attempts to convince ugliness and naivety to look beautiful. This is in direct conflict with contemporary push towards the corporate and the clean with brands controlling more and more of the public attention.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Emily Gayle: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Gayle, Emily, artist
    The artist's statement: Naturalistic expressionism evolved from regional and experiential processes is illustrated in my printmaking developments. Each print considers material, method, concept, and visual design to create impressionable outcomes. Materials I employ may include ash or essential oils sourced from the state of Colorado. Lithographs assembled with the entire stone enhance the presence of the human connection to the earth. Visual designs I choose are dependent on the concept demonstrated and my recognized emotional state. Compositions often interpret the Poudre Canyon to recreate landscapes that have imprinted on me. Experiences I select translate through gestural abstract marks. Reproducing a moment in time repeatedly with printmaking allows me to share this intimate experience with others and honor the existence of patterns in the world. My documentations holistically explore my identity as an artist in relation to my vast environment.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Grace Morris: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Morris, Grace, artist
    The artist's statement: Preservation and more specifically the act of keeping an event or structure in existence is the driving force behind my research and creativity. I create visual representations of specific historical events and architectural sites through various printmaking techniques. Recently, the focus of my art pieces has been on decaying structures and historical events resulting in destruction. I am captivated by the structure of architecture, but knowing the historical significance of a structure along with its degradation furthers my motivation to preserve it through art. I research sites and occurrences in the United States, with a more recent, narrow focus on Colorado. I utilize a combination of linear marks with gestural, painterly marks to depict recognizable architectural structures amidst chaos and disorder. Structures that are visually unsafe and unstable influences my work and challenges the perception of permanence and indestructibility. When portraying a building that is decaying and being reclaimed by nature, I research to find the reason why humans abandoned the structure. The condition of the building provides further context to the changes in society and the issues humans were facing at the time of abandonment. For example, changes in the economy such as depressions or shifts in modes of production have resulted in the abandonment of buildings that no longer serve a purpose in society. If the building was destroyed by a natural disaster or human violence, I research to learn the historical event behind the deconstruction. These pieces are based on primary sources such as photographs, personal accounts or newspaper articles to best interpret the event. This work of damaged structures represents and symbolizes human unrest, inaction with natural disasters or societal anger and violence that are seen multiple times throughout history.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Noah Dalbow: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Dalbow, Noah, artist
    The artist's statement: My work explores the role that technology plays in society by creating a unsettling futuristic world that reveres technology to the point of disconnection from the external world. The pieces that I've created I view as almost sort of icons from the futuristic world with the figures representing various entities in these people's pantheon. The figures integration into the environment by power cables and electrodes represents their transcendence or integration with a sort of cosmic consciousness or god. This also ties into the horror of the loss of individuality and autonomy to a power greater than oneself as well as the simple body horror of having your body invaded. The advancement of technology has led to great things for society increasing life spans and preventing disease. We can now chat with people halfway across the globe and travel there in a few days. We are no longer constrained to meeting people through physical proximity, unfortunately, people are also no less depressed and isolated than before, if not more so. To some extent it almost seems like we have replaced tangible relationships with hollow imitations. Technology has also allowed the spread of some of the most terrible and virulent propaganda possible, replacing knowledge with illusion. I use more antiquated printmaking techniques to make most of my work as the tactile nature just gives better feedback and the resulting images has more detail than digital work is capable of. The compositional and technical complexity which I attempt is influenced by 17th artists like Doré and Goya. While I enjoy making and viewing less representational art I truly enjoy the challenge of trying to make things look 'believable.' The content of my work is influenced directly by the works of more modern artists such as Giger and Bekinski whose horrifying and psychological work I find infinitely fascinating. Outside of the visual arts I'm influenced by my love of fantasy, sci fi, and mythology and writers like Neil Gaiman, Lovecraft, and Mike Mignola.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Erica Quihuiz: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2019) Quihuiz, Erica, artist
    The artist's statement: I use process as an exercise in tranquility, humor as an exercise in empathy, and risk as an exercise in transformation. I embrace contemporary forms of print media as an effective form of self-expression, and also hold a deep respect for the rich historical tradition of printmaking as a trade and a craft. I encourage shifts in technology as an allegory to examine our ever-fluctuating environment alongside what it means to be a female. I am inspired by contemporary feminist writings and specifically respond directly to the ever-present tendrils of the Chthulucene. As an antidote to pure cynicism, I like to play with unconventional materials such as pigments extracted from tea or fresh fruits and imagine that I am resourcefully gathering vital supplies in preparation for a meaningful psychological battle against an ominous ecological future.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Taylor Gornell: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2019) Gornell, Taylor, artist
    The artist's statement: Within my body of work, I am exploring ideas of nature and the overlooked. For ten years, I volunteered at a Nature Center taking care of prairie and wetlands animals such as snakes, frogs, turtles, hawks, and owls. I was able to gain a thorough appreciation of all of these animals and their habitats. I hope to show a side of the United States that is rarely shown; the unique ecosystems such as prairies and wetlands and to draw attention to animals that are not commonly seen as important parts of the ecosystems they reside in. I want to present the prairie and wetlands, and the animals that live there as valuable and compelling.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Abigail Sanford: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2019) Sanford, Abigail, artist
    The artist's statement: For my recent body of work I have been using photos and memories from my four month study abroad experience in Florence, Italy. I was influenced deeply by the work of the Renaissance masters as well as the architecture and general appreciation of art throughout the entire culture. This series is a visual re-creation of several unique and beautiful scenes from my trip. I've wanted to create a body of work that not only captures my time abroad, but also expresses the meaning and growth I experienced while away from home. My work explores the idea of how our memories can be changed by our emotions in order to know our true selves. Our emotional selves are such an important facet of our humanity. Being able to understand our feelings and manage them well is vital in being a healthy person. Suppressing and ignoring our feelings can be as unhealthy as mismanaging our emotions. Through personal reflection, I have come to understand and see the benefit of our emotional lives. We can choose to lean into that part of our existence which will create a richer and more meaningful experience of life. I have designed images of my personal sketches and photos by laser printing them onto acrylic plastic. Each color is overlapped or embedded into the design to exude a mood or emotion associated with each image. This comparison shows how memories can lose detail over time and the memories associated with rich emotions fade less. My goal is for the viewer to be able to identify with the changes in their own memory about an experience and reflect on how their emotions influence that memory. Through this series, I would encourage the audience to get in touch with their emotions, the color of life, and explore the impact that feelings can have as they experience all of what it means to be human.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Savannah Anderson: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2018) Anderson, Savannah, artist
    The artist's statement: "Forest bathing," is a traditional Japanese method of taking in a forest's being as a way of healing. Every sight, sound, texture, and smell, no matter where I am, undoubtedly influences the formal as well as conceptual decisions I make in the studio. I find strange favor in asymmetrical forms, but also collections of similarity.Discovering the significance of mark making and immersing myself fully in my work as a lifestyle allows me to capture my senses through print. My journey of expression has evolved from domination of fear of failure to self-discovery through trial and error. My work ties the importance of individual experience to the community of nature, space and innate biophilia. (Relevant to Current Capstone Show) Enforestation encourages playful dialogue between viewer and print. Although one of the many appeals of printmaking is the ability to create multiples, manipulating prints by cutting them apart, drawing, or embroidering on top of existing designs adds a personal narrative that cannot be duplicated no matter the number of identical prints. By stepping outside of the traditional boundaries of printmaking and using mixed media, new conversations grow from color, shape and personal aesthetic decisions.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Robert Di Grappa: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2018) Di Grappa, Robert, artist
    The artist's statement: When did art become Art? In ancient times everything we call art today was created with a specific function, whether it was a clay pot, a necklace, a sword, tools, clothing, or any of the various items used in everyday life, all created by hand. As a horse-shoer (Farrier) I learned early on that there should be no distinction between craftsmanship and artistic prowess. While working for the company that, at the time, had the contract to shoe the Budweiser horses, one of the elderly gentleman I worked for said, "We are finesse shoers." As an artist and craftsman, I have worked with clay, charcoal, pencil, ink, acrylic, wood, stone, metal, video, photography, and even utilized animal bone in my sculptures. Printmaking can involve some or all the above in the technology known as lithography, intaglio, woodcut, and photo-lithographs. I have used bark from a Cottonwood tree to print with, married wood and stone and burned the wood and brushed it to obtain value, welded metal in both coal and gas forges and with welding equipment, hammered the metal to stretch it, texture it, gouged it and split it, using heat to color it. These sculptural processes have been translated directly into how I work with Zinc and Copper Intaglio printmaking plates. I enjoy the process of formalizing an object, capturing an image on paper, representing an abstract idea, collaging, carving, and combining as many of the materials I have mentioned into a coherent representation of a stream of consciousness. My desire is, to express my belief in the moment, of what I believe, and the wonder I perceive in that moment, according to that belief.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Hannah Chapman: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2018) Chapman, Hannah, artist
    The artist's statement: Cyanotype is an alternative process in which rays from the sun expose a layer of photosensitive material on paper or fabric. The marks you see in my cyanotypes are a negative representation of drawings on a transparency. Other processes, like lithography and intaglio, are methods in which an image is etched into the surface of a stone or a metal plate from which multiple impressions can be pulled with the help of ink. Cyanotype and lithography lend themselves to experimental practices in which I am always searching to further immerse my mind. I draw using methods of the automatic and subconscious, as my marks are formed by nothing but instinctual movements and responses to the marks as they come. I do not think about what I draw until I draw it. This way I am tapping into mechanical variations that are programmed into me. The large scale allows me to fall into the act of drawing and presents an inviting quality to the viewer. All of my marks are asking the viewer to witness them. Lack of control and choice are the underlying elements of my work. Chaos is my ultimate inspiration. I did not choose to be me and yet, in all this chaos, I am here. I am here at this moment because of my family (and wonders of the universe). This art is my gratitude. With each piece, my experience and memory expand and my work grows as a celebration of them and the self. The sun burns the spaces surrounding marks and memories. The stone absorbs these marks. What you see are indirect translations of my celebration. My work is a vessel for shadows to exist in the absence of light and space.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Keenan Zeller: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Zeller, Keenan, artist
    The artist's statement: As a small child I was fascinated by nature and made a point to surround myself in its beauty. I had a very strange childhood. I was often getting into trouble and acting out in unique ways, which made my parents worry. On road trips I made my mother pull over when we passed a cemetery. I would lose myself wandering around the grassy fields with cement tombstones and flowers, both dead and alive. I was interested in the dead as much as I was with the living. I was the perfect blond hair blue eyed child with an unusual interest in death. This led me to have an appreciation for life and the fragility of living things. My work is made from a durable material that is easily manipulated. It can become a fragile, delicate object such as a rose petal, or can be a strong sturdy object. There are endless possibilities with clay. I have the ability to make something feel alive. Being present with the clay and pushing myself to see how far I can't make it is not only thrilling but gives me a sense of power in the studio, a sacred space. Feeling and manipulating the material to surrender to my touch and pressure allows me to provoke different ideas. There is a sense of being present, and there can be times of absence. Each stroke or touch, intentional or not is embedded in the material and remains once fired. The mark of the hand or tool dictates even more pattern and detail I aim to show in my work. This gives my work the ability to feel alive or dead, stagnant or dynamic. This gives the voids in my work a purpose, they become mysterious, eerie, and one may get lost.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Duy Nguyen: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Nguyen, Duy, artist
    The artist's statement: Traditional printmaking provided a means for me to explore and implement graphic design orchestrations in a way that marries the digital to the physical and intent to content. Each tangible print serves as a documentation of my design pursuits through deliberate planning and intentional organization of colors, shapes, textures, and negative space. First and foremost, I aim to initiate a cohesive graphic experience for the viewer, which through its simplicity, is aesthetically engaging, harmonious, and balanced as a formalized composition.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Taylor Smith: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Smith, Taylor, artist
    The artist's statement: The images I create serve as forms of meditation and catharsis. Initially, my process begins by mentally dissecting an issue in my life. My thoughts surround the people and scenes involved, and I begin to translate them into physical compositions. As each line, dot, and texture begins to accumulate, metaphorical labyrinths come to life. These labyrinths are my thoughts and feelings manifested onto the surface. It is only after I first produce from this uninhibited stream of consciousness that I enter an introspective stage of reflection and structure. This is where I can step back and observe the marks, react, and proceed to alter the tangible work itself. I make decisions to either conceal or reveal content by applying more layers of color or overlapping marks. I choose to abstract my work to maintain the privacy and intimacy of my own literal narratives, thus allowing the viewer to interpret the work from their own collection of life experiences.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Austin Armstrong: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Armstrong, Austin, artist
    The artist's statement: My work uses visual forms to explore the interplay my personal origins, various religions perspectives, and the way in which we interact with our world. I investigate these concepts by reflecting upon my own origins, both thorough ancestral and spiritual lenses. My imagery is largely drawn from of my personal history, instances of family illness, and archetypes of religious iconography. These tools give way to a wide array of interpretation, while also letting the viewer a glimpse into the concrete and personal space that I create from. A person's beliefs are shaped by the world view that they inherit, as well as the intentions they take in addressing all given situations. This work is a visual symptom, produced by my intentional pursuit of truth amongst my personal beliefs and practices.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Jackson Connolly: capstone
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Connolly, Jackson, artist
    The artist's statement: My work seeks to combine the two worlds of digital and the analog printmaking. Currently working as a graphic designer, I have taken many of the skills and design techniques I use in my profession and have carried them over into my printmaking work. In the end I'm left with work that blends together photography, digital graphics, typography, and found imagery with classic mark making techniques. I tend to focus on classical or mundane subject matter and attempt to breathe new life into it either through distortion or the use digital manipulation. My background as a designer shows through heavily in my work with much of it having a highly graphic feel. But my work seeks to challenge both the conventions of the design and printmaking worlds by embracing the unknown and variable aspects of analog printmaking and combining it with the rigid and technical precision of digital design. All in all my work is a commentary and seeks to challenge the common conceptions we have about printmaking, modern design and the art world in general. By challenging these conventions I have created a body of work that is both well designed yet evokes strong emotion through strategic use of printerly mark making techniques.