Hey everyone, I hope you had a pleasant week. Last Tuesday was only the second time I visited an art gallery since all of the shutdowns started happening across our country. I missed viewing art in person and, this time, I had the chance of doing so by myself (a blessing during the pandemic) as the Waverly Small Works Gallery located in Waverly, PA lives up to its name in the size of the space.
The name of the show is “Shelter in Place” and features the work of the highly accomplished printmaker, Ron Rumford. The exhibit’s opening reception was September 17th and the show closes on October 22nd. Masks are required to enter the gallery and the hours are 12:30-4:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays or by appointment (email firstname.lastname@example.org).
I took my Canon with me to try and photograph the space. The size and shape of the gallery has always been a bit difficult to work with since the walls jut out at varying angles. That, combined with the rapidly changing natural lighting that peered through the windows and the steady color of the inside artificial light, posed the challenge of adequately photographing Rumford’s hanging works; I’m also still not too great at digital image editing and have to work on white balancing.
I was lucky enough to have the space to myself; I sat on the bench in the middle of the room and just stared at the works that hung on the walls. The peaceful quiet of the room and held a meditative warmth about it. Below are three of my favorite pieces from the show along with Rumford’s artist statement all from a booklet the gallery provided.
I took one printmaking course at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and absolutely loved it, so Rumford’s prints provided a much needed visual experience. The lighthearted rhythm of the shapes and the bright colors in the above prints lets the viewer’s eyes bounce around and they offer an attempt at happiness as suggested in Rumford’s artist statement when he wrote “Why not work toward lightening up?”.
For those who don’t know, drypoint is a process akin to engraving, collagraphy is the process of materials being applied on a stiff base (i.e. cardboard), and chine-collé is basically using thin paper (i.e. tissue paper) and gluing it to the surface of a print. If you’d like to explore more printmaking techniques, here’s a link to an awesome master list with plenty of examples.
I hope you get a chance to visit the show before it’s taken down. Until next time, stay safe and take care of yourselves!