Category Archives: Printmaking

Lulie Wallace: The Sweet Life

Spiky Flowers, by Lulie Wallace

Spiky Flowers, by Lulie Wallace

Lulie Wallace is scrolling through designs she’s fashioned into patterns on her laptop: “There’s a million of them, there’s tons,” she says, smiling.

“I’ve licensed things before to places like Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters- but what I’ve really been wanting to see is whole patterns [based on her work]- and it turns out there’s this whole field called surface design.  It turns out a lot of illustrators are in surface design.  And a lot of artists.”

We’re sitting in Redux’s classroom at two wooden tables tucked together just shy of the center of the room.  Big boxes of Wallace’s goods are stacked to one side, ready to ship out.  The AC blows down to one side of us warmishly, and if we turn to one side we can see into Wallace’s studio.

The burlap doors are still pinned back from her recent show, and from here I can see walls filled from floor to ceiling with cheerful canvases: flowers in patterned pots and pitchers, cheerful tablescapes.  One shows a table strewn with flower cuttings and a pair of scissors.  Wallace’s work is whimsical and folksy, with a largely pastel palette; each one beachy and full of sunshine like Wallace herself, who is wriggling in her chair beside me, happily vibrating in flip flops and cut offs as she scrolls.

“I love seeing art come off the canvas.  I mean, you look at a blouse, you look at a bedspread- they’re forms of everyday art, art you can actually use.  So my idea is to approach people who are already working with fabric and have them use my patterns.  There are five collaborators I’d really like to work with- I call them my dreamweavers.” She smiles when I ask who her dreamweavers are.  “Let’s call them a local clothing company, a kids clothing line, maybe a badass stationary line.”  A friend of hers comes into the classroom wielding a box of cupcakes;  Lulie dives in delightedly.  “Fabric is so nice because it doesn’t take a lot of money to see the art form to fruition.  And I can do fabric to order.  I can do it by the yard.”

Pink Flowers, by Lulie Wallace

Pink Flowers, by Lulie Wallace

 

So how does this work, turning one of her canvases into a pattern?

“I sketch with a very fine illustrator pen and then I scan into an ordinary printer.  I use Adobe Illustrator and photoshop.  I applied to get a UGA fabric design student to come in and intern here this summer, and she’s teaching me all the technical stuff I wouldn’t have known.  She’s super proficient in photoshop.”

Machinery whines from a studio on the other side of the gallery.

“It’s like a giant carpenter bee,” I say- and then wince as the whine gives way to hammering.

Wallace laughs.  “That’s Kaminer.  [A jewelry designer.]  We call her Haminer.”  Something on her screen suddenly catches her eye, and Lulie Wallace leans into her computer, concentrating.

I excuse myself for a few minutes to explore her studio, leaving Wallace to work. Behind the burlap doors I find a large wheelie cart piled high with brushes, paints, used palettes.  A pair of old-fashioned sunglasses perch owlishly above a small carton of maple almond butter in squeezie packs.  An emergency stash?  More palettes, paints, brushes.

Underneath all this is the aforementioned printer; ordinary, as Wallace said, and on the other side of the cart is a jumble of shoes, some tupperware, and a beach towel.  The walls are covered with canvases, and a tall metal chair sits in one corner, splattered with paint.  It is facing her newest piece, featuring a brightly colored table setting. When I come back out into the classroom, Wallace is scrolling again.

“Its so fun to scan your stuff in,” she says.  “There’s so many color manipulation possibilities.  Things you could never do ordinarily with a canvas- you can change the color palette in an instant, completely changing the personality of a pattern.  Same design, but with a different color.  We call that ‘color-ways.’”

“Beautiful word.”

“It is.” Wallace looks up as her intern, Brooke Davidson, sails into the studio.  Davidson’s sunny blonde hair is tied up and smoothed back by a wide black headband.

Davidson explains she primarily works in photoshop.  “You try to create a repeat where you don’t notice the tile.  When I look at fabric I can see if its’ got a good repeat or not.”

“Can you look at fabric and pick out the tile?”

“Kind of, sometimes.  There’s also this thing you can do called a half drop repeat, where the pattern kind of continues down, and so the next one fits into it a little lower.”

I ask her how she likes her internship.

“It’s been really fun, I love Charleston so much!  I wish I could stay, but I have to go back and student teach.  But maybe someday!”

We talk about the possibility of her getting a studio here, and of further collaborations with Lulie. She’s been working with Wallace to help her develop “a portfolio of a ton of repeats.  And I’ve been painting a lot this summer, I’m been so inspired by,” she sweeps her hands around us,  “all this!  I’m doing abstract stuff, playing with layers.  It’s cellular, almost.  And Lulie gives me so much good advice.  She said next week maybe I could even bring my stuff in, we can play around with it in photoshop.  Have you seen the lunchboxes she does?”

Davidson takes me around to the side of Lulie Wallace’s studio; more canvases, more boxes of product.  She pulls out an old fashioned metal lunch box coated in one of Wallace’s cheery design.

“How fun!”

“Yeah, she’s great,” Brooke says, grinning.

But cupcake break is over, and now Wallace and Davidson seem itchy to get back to work.  We hug goodbye, and I leave them still happily chattering and scrolling away under the air conditioner.

-article by Pauline West, a novelist and writer for Redux Contemporary Art Center.  Her novel Evening’s Land recently won the Helene Wurlitzer Fellowship Award.

Peaches and Cream, by Lulie Wallace

Peaches and Cream, by Lulie Wallace

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Father’s Day Focus: Sculptor Tony Smith

TOny SMith

Die Sculpture, by Tony Smith

Did you know that American Sculptor, Tony Smith, was not only pioneer in the development of Minimalistic Sculpture in the modern art world, but he helped shaped the artistic careers of his daughters, Kiki Smith (sculptor, printmaker) and Seton Smith (photography)?  

Starting in his 50s, Tony Smith began to create minimalistic pieces inspired by the abstract artwork of his friends: Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock, and Clifford Still. Living most of his life in New Jersey, his home was his studio. It was here, Tony’s children were encouraged to actively participate in his creative process as he allowed both girls to help him create cardboard/toothpick models for his geometric sculptures.  

 “My father just raised us to be his assistants,” jokes Kiki. “We were like educational experiments.” -excerpt from Artnet

This formalist study laid the foundation for both girls to assert their own ideas in the visual arts. Kiki Smith (b. 1954) is known for her provocative work, a combination of body/spiritual explorations and story-telling through sculptures, printmaking, drawing. Seton Smith (b.1955) found her way through photography, exploring themes of memory and desire.

Blue Girl, 1998 by Kiki Smith

Blue Girl, 1998 by Kiki Smith

Seton Smith, 1991

Seton Smith, 1991

So, perhaps there is truth in the old saying, the apple doesn’t fall from the tree. For Kiki Smith and Seton Smith continue to impact the contemporary art world with their own artistic visions, initiated and nurtured by their father, Tony Smith.  

Cheers to all the great dads out there sharing their passions for life with their children. Happy Father’s Day!

Redux Fall 2012 Class Schedule

Enrollment is now open for Redux’s Fall semester with beginning to advanced courses in silver arts, drawing, photography, mixed media and more. All are affordable, timed to fit the schedules of working people and are taught by professional artists.  And don’t forget: as a member, you’ll receive 20% OFF these classes and all Redux classes and workshops! To learn more, click hereBelow are class dates & times. 

Silver Arts

Beginners Jewelry  October 9, 6:30pm – 8:30pm, October 16 & 23, 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Printmaking

Private Lessons in Letter Press (couples welcome!)  9 hrs per month structured around your schedule

Block Printing Fabric Workshop  October 2, 6pm – 9pm

Screen Printing T-Shirt Class  October 3, 10, 17, 24, 6pm – 9pm 

Relief Printing Class  October 29, November 5, 12, 19, 6pm – 9pm

Screen Printing Workshop  November 27, 6pm – 10pm

Painting 

Painting with Acrylics  October 1, 8, 15, 22, 7pm – 9pm

Introduction to Oil Painting  October 3, 10, 17, 24, 6pm – 8pm

Mixed Media Painting  November 5, 12, 19, 26, 7pm – 9pm

Landscaping with Oil Pastels  November 7, 14, 21, 28, 6pm – 8pm

Drawing

Sunday Figure Drawing (drop in)  Every Sunday, 5pm -7pm 

Introduction to Drawing  September 4, 11, 18, 25, 6pm – 8pm

Colored Pencil Drawing  September 8, 15, 22, 29, 3pm – 5pm

Intro to Drawing the Figure  October 30, November 6, 13, 20, 6:30pm – 9:30pm 

Classical Figure Drawing Workshops  September 10, 17, 6:30pm – 9pm

Daytime Intuitive Figure Drawing  October 4, 11, 18, 25, November  1, 8, 11am – 2pm

Mixed Media

Picture Framing Class  September 6, 13, 20, 27, 6pm – 9pm 

Collage/Photomontage Workshop  October 6, 10am – 3pm

Matting Techniques One Night Workshop  October 29, 6pm – 9pm

Illustrating Children’s Books  November 1, 8, 15, 6pm – 9pm

Art Theory

A History of African American Printmaking: 1724 to 2000  November 29, 6pm – 8pm 

Music Theory

Intro to Music Theory and Ear Training Class  September 5, 12, 19, 26, 6pm – 7:30pm

Photography/Film

Private Lessons in Black & White Photography  9 hrs/month structured around your schedule

Digital-Video Filmmaking  October 4, 11, 18, 25, 6pm – 9pm

Meet Redux Artist: Lindsay Windham

Longtime Redux studio renter, Lindsay Windham is a freelance designer & printer with an extensive design portfolio. She’s an inspiring and bright spirit to all she meets–a true asset to the Redux community. Here’s a little Q & A interview with Lindsay where she talks about her unique, creative path which has led her from neuroscience to the creative collective, Distil Union and their clever invention of “Snooze”.

How long have you been at Redux? 
I started printing at Redux in 2006 when Jessie Bower and I learned how and then started teaching the screen-printing class together. I moved into the upstairs shared space with Nate Phelps in 2008, and into the new print shop space when it opened. I do miss being up in the “perch” and having a view over the entire Redux, but having the print shop consolidated and separate from the classroom space has been good. 

What do you love about being a part of the Redux community?
 There’s an energy that you get from being around so many different creatives! It charges me up, and pushes me to make room in my life for creative pursuits. It’s a supportive network, and at the same time I feel like an important member too who’s there to give input and support back. I try not to take Redux for granted, it’s a give-give situation.

What inspires you?
 Other than the renters at Redux who are getting their hands dirty and making it happen every day? Music inspires me, and musicians, and designers of all sorts. I respect anyone who pours their hearts and souls into their expression. To me it’s terrifying because I grew up thinking I was going to be a scientist and didn’t think twice about art. I’m still learning how to let myself be creative, and how to be inspired instead of intimidated.

Do you listen to music while you work? 
I have a Sam Cooke 4-cd box set plus a few more of his albums that I put on shuffle when I’m printing. Oh man, in the summertime, screen printing and sweating to Sam Cooke — it doesn’t get any better! If I’m doing work on the computer, it’s a lot of Dr. Dog, Ratatat, Black Keys — stuff I can bop along to and keep my brain engaged and blood pumping. 

Can you tell us a little about your background: how you found your way into design and what types of design work you do?
 My background is in the life sciences. I worked at the MUSC Physiology and Neuroscience lab after graduating from CofC with a BS in Biology. Rat brains and cocaine, which is pretty compelling stuff… In my spare time I was making posters and album art for friends’ bands for fun. Music posters have always been an easy way to get into art — usually affordable, and you get that direct connection with a band that you love. I had been doing most of my design work either on the computer or as multi-media collages that I’d scan and print. As a process-oriented person, learning how to screen print was a no brainer! And I’m fascinated with marketing and packaging and the whole presentation of a product, so that’s what I do now with Distil Union as our graphic designer. 

Describe Distil Union. We’ve dubbed Distil Union a “micro-collective” comprised of three designers who met at DLO, an Apple accessories company: Nate Justiss and Adam Printz were the two industrial designers, and I was a copywriter/web/graphic designer. DLO was a small company which was acquired by the global corporation Philips Electronics, who closed our office 3 years later. After a few months of freelancing on our own, the three of us reconnected on a mission to create the sorts of products and packaging that we always wanted to see on the shelves, but were never able to execute within Philips for one reason or another. Our philosophy is to create products that solve problems in a clever way with simple execution and considered materials. We’re located in a live/work space on the 2nd floor at 161 King Street near Queen. Working at a window that overlooks King Street is a dream come true.  

Latest Project? What was the inspiration behind SNOOZE?
 We’ve kicked off our product line with Snooze, a minimal iPhone alarm dock with a big rubber snooze bar. The inspiration was to solve the first problem we encounter in our day: waking up with our iPhones. The iPhone has replaced our alarm clock, but it’s not ideal — iPhones get knocked to the floor, alarms get shut off accidentally, charging cables fall behind our nightstands. We wanted to improve that experience, and adding a ginormous snooze bar to the iPhone in a simple dock design not just solved the problem, it made us smile. We recently received full funding on Kickstarter, and now we can’t wait to bring our first product to market! Snooze is only the beginning….

Where can people find you/Distil Union?
 You can check our website distilunion.com, our facebook.com/distilunion, our twitter @distilunion, or come by our office on King Street! Just call first, Nate and Adam live here…

Future goals?
 Our goal with Distil Union is to design beyond the Apple accessories market, to deliver unique, sexy products that people want. 
My personal goals? The usual stuff, to keep growing and learning and to find happiness, as soon as I figure out what that looks like… Oh, I would also like to revolutionize the music industry so that artists and musicians make the money and the living that they deserve. That would make me really happy.

The Redux Revival 2 Countdown – 6 days!

We’ve got a burning desire to share these red-hot, new tix for the Recurring Revival 2!! All handmade by our very own studio artists in Redux’s print room. Can’t you just feel the love? 

Advanced tickets are $10 and are available at Redux and Artist and Craftsman. Tickets will be $12 at the door on Saturday.

Meet Redux Artist – Xiao Xin Lu

Announcement, Image: "Points of Interest" by Xiao Xin Lu

Redux printmaker, Xiao Xin Lu is currently exhibiting her work at the Flagship Art Gallery475-A East Bay Street, until April 30, 2012. Xin’s mixed-media monoprints are inspired by her childhood memories and recent travels to her home country of China. Her work imbues a sense of longing for a place to belong. 

We had the opportunity to talk with Xin today. Here’s what she had to say.

Your work explores the relationship of place and identity. Can you tell us what inspires you to contemplate this topic? My family moved to the U.S.when I was 7 so I did not know much about Chinese history or my heritage.  This body of work is about my exploration into the past especially the circumstances (i.e. China’s One Child Policy) surrounding my parents’ decision to immigrate to the US. This series of prints arise from a need to capture, locate, and secure my past.  I use images of China and the United States, the East and the West, my relocated childhood and adolescence, my oppressed gender and race, as a representation of the journey in my continual search for a place to belong. Though the lines and dots on my maps are simple and plain, they are powerful enough to connect my childhood to the present, embody my search for home, share the struggles of my gender and race, and communicate what words simply cannot.

Where did you study art? What was your concentration? I went to Vanderbilt University with a double major in Studio Arts and Psychology. 

Did you always know you wanted to be an artist? Yes, since the third grade. 

Who are your favorite artists/why? There are so many artists who I admire and love, but my favorite one is Van Gogh. My first memory of wanting to become an artist was after seeing his work in my third grade art class. 

If you’re not printmaking, you are…. hanging out with my husband Kam, testing out new recipes, wandering the streets of Charleston, working at Umi Japanese in Mt. Pleasant, and playing at the beach.

Favorite quote? “Art is what poetry can’t describe, poetry is what art can’t picture.”-Anonymous 

Favorite local restaurant? I love Poogan’s Porch and 82 Queen. 

Favorite art publication? I like the Charleston Art Mag because I like to see what local artists are producing. 

Your work is very poetic. Do you have a favorite poet/poem? This is not a poem but a line from one of my favorite books, The Little Prince

“If you love a flower that lives on a star, then it’s good, at night, to look up at the sky. All the stars are blossoming.”

What do you love most about being a part of Redux? I love how supportive everyone is at Redux.  I feel very lucky to be a part of it. 

Future goals? I’m preparing for a show at the City Gallery in May, so my current goal is to create a cohesive body of work for it. 


Planned Parenthood Health Center presents RE:NUDE III Art Show and Sale at Redux Contemporary Art Center

Re/Nude will have its 3rd Annual Art Show and Sale at Redux Contemporary Art Center, located at 136 St. Philip St., on March 21-24, 2012. The Premiere Night Show and Sale will be on March 21, from 6-10:30pm. Admission to the Premiere Night Show is $15 in advance or $20 at the door. The Local Honeys will provide stellar entertainment, and beer, wine, and bubbly will be served. The Public Show and Sale will take place March 22-24, from 10am-5:30pm. There is a suggested $10 donation upon entry.

Re/Nude is a benefit for the local Planned Parenthood Health Center. The title of the show is Re-Nude: Celebrate the Body. Nude figurative works, created by local artists, will be for sale. For each piece sold, there will be a 50:50 split- half going to the artist and the other half benefiting Planned Parenthood. Not only will this event support Planned Parenthood, but it also supports the creative community in Charleston, providing local artists an opportunity to show and sell their work.