The journey of printmaking from function to fine art carries a dichotomy. Galleries seeking work that is “fresh” and “cutting edge” often exclude prints because they are deemed too clinical, technical, and restrictive. Ironically, prints that are more experimental- such as working without a press, making one-of-a-kind impressions, and using mixed media- are disqualified. The contemporary printer stands at the crossroads of this paradox- be predictable and get devalued, or be experimental and get discredited?
IMPulse will be the fulcrum from which 25 impressions amass to rouse a collective perspective of female identifying printers. At a time when gender norms are rapidly being dismantled, we ask what happens when womxn are given a platform to exercise impulse? How does the provocative act of spontaneity present itself in printmaking?
The first three letters of the exhibition title -IMP- is a designation assigned to prints that have been pulled by the artist. Historically, only prints that were published by a printshop or a master printer were considered legitimate. Today artists proudly write IMP to indicate that the impression was made by their own hands.
This exhibition is hosted by Womxn Who Print (WWP)- a project based coalition of womxn creating opportunities and community in printmaking. WWP recognizes the need for printers to exercise their distinct approach to the medium in platforms that support the creation of new work. IMPulse would be the continuation of the tiny print project– a venture centered around small, hand-pulled prints.