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Indefinite States of Emergency
by Guest Artist, Helen Frederick
Dec 30 – Jan 25, 2009
First Friday Reception, January 2, 5-8pm
Artist’s Talk and Reception, Sunday, January 10 at 2pm
Washington, DC – The Washington Printmakers Gallery and Washington Print Foundation are pleased to announce the 2009 Invitational Solo Artist Exhibition of Helen Frederick, entitled Indefinite States of Emergency. For this body of work, Frederick has assembled various repeatable matrices to create a series of images and textural information linked together by visual metaphors and layering. The works refer to endangerment, genocide, loss and surveillance. The images come from her personal visual vocabulary, but they reflect memories and current concerns that are part of our collective experience. Mushroom clouds speak to Cold War fears and current headlines. The silhouettes of monitors are reminiscent of old television screens and today’s computers. The diagram of a girl repetitively bowing down illustrates traditional acts of submission, and is reenacted in a contemporary photo of a woman in a movement (“mudra”) that may signify common labor or yogic activity. These visual metaphors, already pregnant with significance, become ever more elaborate messages as they are combined and layered together. As the girl and the woman reach down to the earth we see the turmoil alive below the surface and how this weight is impressed upon us through saturation of the media in our environment.
Frederick’s combination of print techniques emphasizes the simultaneous past/future of her symbols by mixing the traditional and the digital in a fluent, honest practice of printmaking. Her installations and collages make postmodern use of prints’ inherent capacity for multiples and the democratizing force it offers art/communication. The meaning and the means blend seamlessly to convey the artists’ message.
Helen Frederick is a Professor in the Department of Art and Visual Technology at George Mason University. She is internationally known as a print media, book arts and mixed-media installation artist. Frederick is the founder of Pyramid Atlantic, a center for contemporary collaborative projects in printmaking, hand papermaking, digital media and the art of the book, in Silver Spring, Maryland.
About the Washington Printmakers Gallery
The Washington Printmakers Gallery is a cooperative print gallery located in DuPont Circle. Founded in 1985, the Gallery is Washington DC’s primary source for artist-pulled fine art prints. In addition, its sister organization, the non-profit Washington Print Foundation, sponsors the gallery’s outreach programs for the purpose of educating the public about the importance of traditional and contemporary original hand-pulled prints. Gallery hours are: Tuesday through Thursday, Noon – 6 pm, Friday, Noon – 9 pm, and Saturday & Sunday, Noon – 5 pm.