Craft Alliance, the nonprofit arts center in the metro area that describes itself as “dedicated to empowering and enriching communities through craftsmanship,” plans to expand this summer with a studio of 750 square feet dedicated to print and paper art.
The center, which occupies the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis, already offers classes and workshops in ceramics, digital design, fiber, glass, metals and wood.
Funding for the expansion, according to a January press release, is a $66,150 grant from the Little Rock, Arkansas-based Windgate Foundation, whose website says it seeks to “advance contemporary craftsmanship and to strengthen visual arts education in the United States.
“Our desire is to create a print and paper art studio that allows us to provide educational experiences and workshops exploring printmaking, papermaking and book arts,” the press release said. , citing Mark Witzling, the center’s executive director.
Potential additions include a pair of presses to teach courses in relief (printing involving raised surfaces), intaglio (printing involving incised surfaces), and alternative lithographic processes, among others, the press release says.
Grant Benoit, director of education programs at the center, expands on this statement. “The new studio allows artists in the community to learn and participate in printmaking classes that are typically out of reach outside of a university studio,” he says. “Craft Alliance presses will be able to explore printing techniques familiar to them, such as relief carving, but also allow students to experience intaglio – etching metal with acid to create an image or an engraving.