The epic tale of the University of Wisconsin LaCrosse Printmaking Program. The Printmaking program is directed by Joel Elgin and features the odd collection of the many PrintFools who enroll, print and exist from semester to semester in the Shop of Tears.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Drypoint, Line Etch, Wood and a Moral Tale



 Never been a fan of your stinking Oktoberfest...it reduces you to the following sad states depicted by Max Beckmann:


Max Beckmann

Die Gähnenden (The Yawners), 1918
Plate 7 from Gesichter (Faces)
Drypoint, 30.5 x 25.5 (45.0 x 37.0)





Max Beckmann
Irrenhaus (Madhouse), 1918
Plate 16 from Gesichter (Faces)
Drypoint, 26.0 x 30.5 (37.0 x 37.0)


So spend your weekend working in the Shop of Love, and viewing the exhibit you'll find by clicking the title post... and if you are not convinced yet - read below:



See you safe and sound and sober Monday and Tuesday. BPJ 

31 comments:

Marissa said...

The subject matter is interesting in Max Beckman's work. Why would he choose such ugly subjects? I keep wanting to look away from "The Yawners" because I don't want to yawn. "The Sick One" is so creepy and elongated. Ugh, they all just make me uncomfortable. "Drinking Song" is kind of happy with all the people jumbled, connected, and fuzzy.
I think I like Lovis Corinth's work better with the drastic contrasts and the blurriness.

Nate S said...

I really like the imagery of the faces in these pieces. The way that exaggerated and distorted features reflect the subject matter. Like "trinklied (drinking song)" the mashed together figures and swirl line keeps your eye moving around the piece, and reflects the discombombulated feeling of being inebriated (not that i have any idea what that's like). Objectively the depth of tone accomplished with drypoint in these is pretty damn impressive. The gin story kind of reminded me of the reputation Irish immagrants got due to their cheap and easily obtained and manufactured whiskey. Pretty interesing, the "gin lane" print definitley did a good job of expressing this point.

Betsy V said...

Perhaps Beckmann's "ugly subjects" came from his experiences in WW1. He volunteered for the medical corps and after a year, the death and horrors he saw led to a nervous breakdown; much of his work became lonely, tortured and grotesque after that.

Tylor Fischer said...

I have to agree that I am not a Fan of Oktoberfesting. The content in this print are great. I love the fluid nature of his work and the gritty take on the reality of some much of love.

Sarahhigley said...

I'm amazed at Beckman's ability to create such a range of values using only drypoint. His lines are so velvety and rich and controlled. The babies should take an extra close look since they are working in drypoint right now. I hope everybody had a safe weekend. I saw some ugly things this weekend and I hope they didn't involve any of my brothers or sister.

ellen said...

Celebrating getting drunk has never made much sense to me, especially when we routinely have people that don’t…recover…here in la crosse. I’m liking the prints by Beckmann, I think the semi uncomfortable feeling you get while looking at them is the fucking punch that can keep viewers interested.

Tristan D. said...

Max Beckman's prints really show tons of character. I can't get over that and the depth created in each one. I can definitely see the 'Fucking Punch' in each print!

On a side note, gin is bad. I knew that already. But it's relieving to know that modern society's dosing of daily spirits is not like our forefathers!
I wonder if any of Beckman's work was done while intoxicated?

Britt Vogt said...

Love the portraits included in this german expressionist exhibition. I believe it was also one of Da Vinci's preferences to draw ugly people because their faces were so interesting to look at. There is a lot of individuality in all of the characters even though they are squished together in such a tiny area. In Max Beckmann's City Night Lithos there is a boarder to the prints defined with a line, yet some of the figures have an arm or a face sticking out beyond the border. I thought that was pretty cool.

The woodcut by Lyonel Feininger called Villa on the Shore 4 really caught my eye because of the strong directional lines that created the illusion of mountains and sky. I really like this image...

Bethany said...

I am always amazed by how detailed some get with dry point.I enjoy the almost flat like faces of Beckmann's prints. The use of the dry point well emphasizes that characteristic well.

Everyone should watch this link. It's beautiful and you can thank the shops very on Becca Delapp for sending me the link.
http://blog.alcuinsociety.com/2010/09/how-ink-is-made.html

Also in case you didn't read my last blog post, check out http://www.woodtype.org/events.shtml to sign up for the Hamilton Wood Type Letterpress conference/workshop. Don't know what it is? Let me know and maybe we can arrange a print shop showing of Type Face at yours truly.

Bethany said...

Wow #struggle on my grammar.

Keriann said...

I really enjoy beckman's work. I love the content as well as his line quality. I've never been a fan of drinking, and I hate what octoberfest does to our town. If beckman saw it he would have a lot more material for his prints.

Everyone needs to check out the link Bethany posted about ink it is awesome!

Allison Bauer said...

I thought Beckman's work was interesting. I like the distorted and uncomfortable feeling one gets from his subjects--it's neat to see art provoke emotions to the viewers.

Hope everyone had a fun and safe Octoberfest!

Rachel said...

I don't know if I'll ever get why people would want to be downtown in the mess of people let alone get wasted on Oktoberfest.
I did really enjoy the prints by Beckman. The faces keep me interested.
I'm excited that us babies are getting started on our drypoints. I'm eager to see how they turn out.

Molly said...

There is so much detail in these prints, and although the subject matter is interestingly ugly in these prints, the value, lines, and the fluidity make the pieces surprisingly easy to look at. I think the subject matter only makes these prints more interesting to look at. I must say I really enjoy his prints and I agree with Betsy V. that the subject matter probably comes from what he endured in his life.

Max Hautala said...

I am enjoying visiting a new exhibit each week as well as viewing the new exciting works. Max Beckmann chose some interesting subject matter, but he seemed to capture them in a light where they were visually appealing.

Michelle said...

I like his prints. It is really impressive how much range he got with just dry point. The subjects have nice form and detail, which is very cool. I also like the subjects and what they are depicting. Especially the ones that are on the homepage. It is entertaining. And I didn't partake in the festing. I did drive downtown twice on Saturday. It was madness.

Liv Radke said...

Drypoint never ceases to amaze me. I am always blown away by the detail that some people can get in drypoint. Lovis Corinth's work is a fantastic example of that. Freude am Leben (Joys of Life) is soft and looked more like a Litho with the quality and fluidness of the lines. So beautiful.

In my History through film class we watched a movie about Prohibition and the night before they made alochol illegal people went to the streets like crazed individuals trying to consume as much alcohol as possible. I feel like a similar thing happened here in La Crosse this weekend, hope everyone is doing well this week!

the Sheriff said...

Oh that wonderful little tool that I am always afraid to use... it amazes me the possibilities of drypoint. Max Beckman's work ethic and dedication is something to admire. His images tell tales of madness and chaotic states... they are memorizing to me. I love decrepit and odd artwork.

Reminder Printfools who ordered Copper, I paid for the sheets and we will be cutting them Mondays night. Get me your $$$$ asap please. Thanks!

benalberti said...

I like those prints of faces. Its given me some ideas for my first print with the copper plate which I am excited for. My woodcut didn't go so well. Oh and I was home for Oktoberfest, feel like it gets almost too crazy up here.

Gin tastes like Christmas trees

Jessalyn said...

well, that is more then I ever really needed to know about gin. his prints are very intriguing, though. Its amazing what he can do with line. I love to people-watch when there are a lot of drunk people around, so the prints are like permanent moments of that.

K_Rad09 said...

-Kristine-
I like his subject matter and the fullness and unity of his works but I can't imagine why he would choose such distorted facial features. It does add a shock effect that makes yo want to look more. My favorite work of his would have to be The Tall Man.

Alyssa said...

I don't know what it is about some of Max Beckman's work... but I continued to be amused, drawn in more so. I found myself looking over and over at each one of his pieces. They're really interesting. And I actually like the fact that people look abnormal and in a different almost awkward state.

skyler said...

Gin Lane is like amazingly detailed...As I work with copper it makes my hand hurt just looking at it. (Although, it hurt already anyway.) Beckman has interesting organization in the yawners. A lot of people said the characters in these pieces make the viewers uncomfortable but I think the people are mostly comical in their ugliness.

Joanne said...

drypoint drypoint drypoint, i really like the line quality it offers, expecially in max's work.

i'm pretty excited about my shop labour. i think i did a pretty fantastic job on it today :)

VLAO said...

not a big fan of the first two images but i really like the last image. i think its all the different value and other drawing elements that were used that makes me like it. vertical placement and overlapping are very successful in the last piece.

Marikoko said...

It was my first Octoberfest in Lax. I was in the parade, carrying a flag, yay!! :D It was also fun to see how some(or most?) people were sooooo excited about it.

Max Beckman's style is very dynamic, and his way of using the space is very interesting! Somehow, the second picture, "Madhouse," makes me think of a picture book which I read when I was little...strange, but maybe it's because there are lots of stories and emotions going on in just a one picture.

Carlamarie1 said...

I love the idea of ugly or distorted imagery. Contortion makes everything more interesting. The range of values that Beckman achieves is incredible, I'm going to try really hard to get such a range. "The Sick One" is such an awesome looking print. I love the distortion!

Kirky B said...

The quality of the german expressionist's wood cuts in some cases are raw but still really effective. As far as the intaglio and lithographs I think they are really stimulating. I am drawn to Ludwig Meidner's dry points. And who knew gin was such a big deal for London in the 1730's? So "the average Londoner drank 14 gallons of spirit each year", thats probably not to dissimilar from our lovely town.

Mark K said...

Drypoint brings me back. Beckman can do some incredible shit with conveying so much depth and detail. Madhouse is a pretty good example, as well as conveying how La Crosse was this past weekend. I'm really digging on Erich Hekel's woodcuts. The linear quality to the people he does is incredible, with so few lines he conveys so much emotion. That was a pretty interesting article about Gin, the "Gin Lane" print looks very familiar, perhaps on the blog before? Pretty unreal how crazy people got for gin. Selling their homes, furnishings, and even children, holy hell.

Zach Morin said...

Greetings from Kalamazooooooo!

It's Bedtime with BrassAss!

Old Greg said...

Not much for Oktoberfesting myself, but the depth in some of these is amazing! Drypoint really does wonders and oh how I do miss it!