It’s Back to School Time!

 In Artists, Elizabeth Catlett

All around the country college students are flocking back into the classroom. Parents are dreading the high cost of tuition and Deans at elite institutions are anxiously worrying about how their retention programs have performed.

Academe: Tuition by Evan Lindquist / $200

Evan Lindquist has created a series of engravings poking a bit of fun at the world of Academe. In “Tuition”, a 2005 engraving, he addresses issues relating to the ever-rising cost of higher education. The university bursar has turned a parent upside down to empty his pockets of every possible cent while others flee in fear and another official seems to throw up his hands in despair.

Academe: Retention by Evan Lindquist / $200

In “Retention”, he brings us across campus as a worried Dean wrings his hands awaiting word of which students have returned for the 2018 fall semester. The US News ranking system has put great weight on student retention and graduation rates in factoring which elite institutions will inch up or plummet down in this fall’s ranking.

Evan Lindquist (b. 1936) knows his subject. He has taught art for 40 years at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. He studied under Mauricio Lasansky at the University of Iowa. Honors include the Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by the Society of American Graphic Artists (SAGA) and the Arkansas Governor’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

 

Today’s college students grew up in a time of instantaneous news but the 24/7 news cycle seems to be working overtime lately. Last week, Omorosa’s book full of gossip and criticism of the Trump administration was leading the news. This week, guilty – by plea or verdict, is topping the charts. Scandal and corruption may grab headlines but our democracy is feeling the blows and shaping the views of young people, soon to be voters.

Elizabeth Catlett / Gossip / 2005 / photolithograph / $2500

African American artist, Elizabeth Catlett (1915-2012) created her 2005 photolithograph, “Gossip” as a presentation print for the New York Print Club in collaboration with master printer Randy Hemminghaus and master paper maker Anne McKeown of the Rutgers Center for Innovative Print and Paper.

Born in 1915 in Washington, D.C., Catlett attended Howard University and then went on to earn an MFA at University of Iowa where she studied under the famed Regionalist, Grant Wood. She also studied at the Art Students League and the Art Institute of Chicago. Catlett became an influential teacher herself at Prairie View College, Dillard University and, finally, from 1959 to 1979, at the Universidad de Mexico.

Today’s college freshmen were just babies when hijacked planes crashed into NYC’s Twin Towers, bringing them down and killing more than 3000 people. With another anniversary coming up on September 11th, it’s hard to remember a time before this scar on America’s psyche. In a 1999 mezzotint, Art Werger captured that time in “The World Below”, a view of lower Manhattan seen from the observation deck of one of the Towers. Two years later, both were reduced to rubble.

Art Werger / The World Below / mezzotint / 1999 / edition 100/ $850

Printmaker and teacher, Art Werger says, “Observed from an elevated point the environment lays out in front of the viewer who becomes an omniscient voyeur, privy to the world below, yet curiously removed from it.  As a cinematic device, this abstract angle allows for an overview of the scene as well as the environment below.”

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dark details of ocean with red tintface of a man in profile with overlaying waves by Art Werger