The Atlanta Printmakers Studio, Print Big!
at BINDERS Limelight Gallery
The Atlanta Printmakers Studio began in 2005 as a group of people passionate about printmaking, community, and collaboration who wanted to pool together to create an organization.
APS is a non-profit community art center that offers print shop access, critical exchange, and collaborative opportunities between artists, as well as a number of educational events, workshops, and exhibitions. APS has made it their mission to nurture the practice of printmaking as an original art form among professional artists and anyone who wants to learn.
Print Big! Their annual steamroller printmaking event started in 2010 as a way to collaborate on a common goal at a large scale. The event brings together a lot of different groups in the art community, including those unfamiliar with printmaking.
Print Big! is held outdoors at APS and a steamroller is used as a printing press to roll over the woodcuts. The resulting prints are gigantic in size and amazing to look at. The event also serves as a lively exchange – bringing together volunteers, artists, and community members from across Georgia, as well as arts organizations like Hammonds House Museum, WonderRoot, Abernathy Arts Center, and Southwest Arts Center.
The unusualness of the event, making 8” x 4” foot prints with a steamroller gets a lot of folk’s attention. Each organization spends two to three months planning and carving the blocks before arriving for the massive, day-long event. Each group will print three times during the event and APS supplies the fabric and ink with over fifty volunteers helping for the day.
After the event each group keeps one of the prints and APS keeps two, one for their archives and the other for their annual art auction.
Last year APS had 10 groups participating in Print Big! including our own Atlanta Printmakers Studio members, Kennesaw State University, Savannah College of Art and Design in Atlanta, University of West Georgia, Sunday Southern Arts Revival, North Atlanta High School, and Shiloh High School.
The event revolves around a theme. For the past few years APS has focused on literacy and southern stories. APS tries to keep the themes somewhat broad so that each group has a lot of room for interpretation. Some of the results have been a portrait of the writer W.E.B. DuBois and Gutenberg and the revolutionary invention of movable type.
It’s a printmaking extravaganza! APS has tours of the studio, demonstrations, guest artists, and they offer smaller portable presses for kids to use. They also print t-shirts on their etching press and have a food truck on site. In the past live music, poetry readings, and a photo booth have been incorporated.
The Atlanta Printmakers Studio is a pillar in the Atlanta arts community and the success of Print Big! represents the interest and relevancy of the medium. Bringing different groups from high schools and Georgia colleges has exposed students to opportunities for internships, exhibitions, our artist-in-residence program, and classes and workshops. APS is committed to nurturing the next generation of printmakers.
Print Big! 2014 will be the 5th anniversary of APS’s most exciting community event and they’re doing something extra special to celebrate. To help make 2014 the biggest and best Print Big! yet, APS is inviting 20 different groups to take part in making a 4’ x 4’ block.
APS will team up two schools/groups to work together to create a print. Each team will carve one 4’ x 4’ foot block. The theme is OPPOSITES ATTRACT so think contradiction, paradox, duality, opposition or collaboration.
Date: Saturday April 12, 2014
Here is the list on the Print Big! participating groups for 2014:
- Atlanta Printmakers Studio
- Kennesaw State University
- University of West Georgia
- Paideia School
- Clark Atlanta University
- Grady High School
- Three Amigos/Art of Such & Such
- University of North Georgia
- Pinecrest Academy
- Southwest Art Center
- Georgia State University
- Wonderroot Arts Center
- Savannah State
- Duluth High School
- Valdosta State University
Learn more at: atlantaprintmakersstudio.org
Throughout the month of February, BINDERS Limelight Gallery will exhibit banners from the 2013 Print Big! event.
The Atlanta Printmakers Studio, 2013 Print Big Banners
Show Dates: Monday, February 3rd – Friday, February 28th
Reception: Friday, February 7th (6 – 8pm)
For questions or more information please contact the BINDERS Education Office at 404237-6331 ext. 203 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by Jacob Gunter