Posts By: Angee

Member Interview: Grace Makuch

Grace Makuch is an artist living and working in Chicago, Illinois. She is interested in the dissemination of language and information amongst fellow millennials. Makuch makes work that is a call and response to being a young person feeling helpless, manic, and confused in the 21st century. Makuch holds a BA from Columbia College Chicago and is an alumna of the Spudnik Press Studio Fellowship Program. She is currently a studio holder at Spudnik Press, where she continues to work in various printmaking techniques.

Lydia James: What was your experience like as part of the Studio Fellowship at Spudnik Press?

Grace Makuch: The experience was awesome for me. I was four months out of school, twiddling my thumbs, thinking: “what am I going to do?” I didn’t have studio access and I knew I loved printmaking, but I didn’t really know how to keep doing it. After school you go from having so many resources to none at all, so I applied for the fellowship at Spudnik Press and I got it! During those seven months, I was able to structure and lay the foundation for the work that I am making now. I didn’t really produce huge concrete things during my fellowship, but it definitely opened up a career path for me.

LJ: You said the Studio Fellowship allowed you to lay the foundation for projects you’re working on now. What does that look like?

GM: So this is a print that I made during my fellowship.

I had been doing the @polenta_girl thing, which is my drawing project and I had been trying to figure out how to move forward from there. It was not serving me anymore, so I started thinking more about writing as a practice, and then I made this print during my fellowship, which perhaps is nothing and everything at the same time?

I was really interested in exploring the finality of the monoprint in congruence with the finality of language. I started writing, and if I messed up I had to scratch it out and keep writing and writing and I did it all in one take.

LJ: It’s almost like an exercise.

GM: Yeah, for sure. I started making more of these writing pieces, or exercises, and then I created a series of work in response to the thought: “if I could talk to God, what would I say?” First I made the monoprints, and then after my fellowship I made a triptych of paintings called Conversations With God.

LJ: Oh wow! I hadn’t realized those were paintings.

GM: Yeah, they are about 4 feet by 9 feet when they are all hung up together. The paintings are from my perspective talking to God, from a businessman’s perspective talking to God, and from a baby’s perspective talking to God—but in the end it’s all me, calling out to God. The conversations get cut down to be abstracted, which makes it difficult to decipher for the viewer. I’m still figuring out why, but I have these two constant conflicting urges to either make something really confusing or make something abundantly clear. So this was me doing a visually confusing project.

LJ: As a viewer, it’s such a natural response to want to be able to finish the sentence, to figure it out.

GM: Yeah! I’m so glad you said that. That’s a huge part of my practice now. I’m currently making work that revolves around the idea of making one good sentence. If I could just make one ‘good’ sentence, what would it look like? What would the language be like? How would it sound coming out of someone else’s mouth? I think it’s a very millennial urge to want to be brief about something – 140 characters or less.

LJ: You said you’re working on a new etching series. How is that going?

GM: These are the plates for my etchings. They’re in the Twitter font, Helvetica Neue Light, but it’s hand lettering that I’ve done. They read “You took a shower” and “I watched a 20 minute Vine compilation on my phone,” and it’s about feeling sad after you have sex.

LJ: Why is it important that you replicate the font by hand?

GM: For me, the Twitter font is super important because […] I think of it as my number one source of inspiration. The people who know me best are the people who follow me on Twitter. I’ve had a Twitter account since I was 14 in 2009. I’ve tweeted nearly 25,000 times. I treat it like an encyclopedia of every thought I’ve ever had that I felt was important enough to share. I think a lot about the millennial disposition of knowing that the people who read my twitter might be able to speak more to my daily state of being than my employers, family members, and even certain close friends.

LJ: Beyond Twitter, what are your biggest inspirations or driving forces behind your work?

GM: Right now I’m reading all of Maggie Nelson’s work and she’s blowing my mind constantly. The way she writes and her ability to move from one thought to the next are effortless. People have referred to her writing as genre-bending and I agree. People need to read The Argonauts!

Also, meme culture is a big influence for me. I think people of different generations are really quick to discredit memes as an important and unique form of communication. I think the way that our generation disseminates crucial information and knowledge is really incredible because it’s visual now, and I think about that all the time. We shouldn’t discredit memes.

LJ: I agree.

GM: Thirty or forty years down the line I don’t know if people will still be making memes, but right now it’s this creative burst of: “Let’s only talk to each other in pictures!”

LJ: Let’s talk about Chicago. Are you from Chicago originally?

GM: I’m from a suburb about 30 minutes north called Northbrook. I went to school in Austin and I really missed Chicago the entire time I was there. There are some things about this city that are super unique to it that I just really missed. I think it’s a great place to live especially if you’re into printmaking.

LJ: Yeah, it seems like there’s a lot going on here.

GM: There’s a ton of printmakers everywhere! I went on the Chicago Print Crawl recently and was blown away by the number of printmaking spaces that exist here! I love living in Chicago. I have a small 5 year old dog and we love the city, we’re just two city girls.

LJ: You already touched on this briefly, but I’m pretty interested in the role your identity plays in your work. You mentioned striving for this sort of intense clarity and when I was looking at your drawing projects some of them struck me as very vulnerable. Yet the way that you’re putting your work out there sometimes makes it seem more like a statement. It’s an interesting balance that I also struggle with in my own work—how intimate do I get with this anonymous audience, the Internet?

GM: It’s interesting that you say that because I get super vulnerable on Twitter and then I refine it with my art. When I say Twitter is a big part of my process, it’s huge. I really do use it like a personal encyclopedia.

Touching on the humor as part of my identity, I come from a family that is really goofy and makes fun of each other a lot. There have also been a few really traumatic things that have happened in my life within the past five years. My dad got diagnosed with Parkinson’s when I was in High School and when I turned 19, I ended up becoming his primary caretaker. So, in addition to working two jobs, and trying to be an artist, and going to school, I was taking care of my dad. That’s a huge part of my identity that a lot of people don’t know about and informs a lot of my personality, and who I am, and how I carry myself. I have this blind optimism all the time because—and this is why I think a lot of my work is funny or really vulnerable—I always think you have two options: you’re either going to laugh or you’re going to cry. And for me, I always prefer to laugh. I make a lot of work where I can open up about things to an extent, but leave it after getting to a certain point and then I cover it back up with humor. It’s a really fine line.

LJ: Right, how much do you give, and…

GM: …how much do you keep to yourself […]. Yeah, my dad, has this great phrase that I think everyone should hear. He says: “It’s all going to be okay, how could it not be?” It’s not necessarily good advice [laughs], but it’s that sort of blind optimism thing can really get people through the heavier stuff.

LJ: Right, sometimes you kind of have to lie to yourself a little bit to push through things.

GM: I’m actually working on a new painting right now that’s just going to be the words “faith beyond reason” over and over again. It’s going to start out as a regular font, and then I’m going to make it italicized, and then bold it. I’ll keep adding layer after layer, which represents my total mentality that sometimes you have to do things without asking why.

LJ: How do you juggle all the different mediums you work in?

GM: That’s a great question. I used to be really scared of sculpture, but for the first time this past year I’ve started to make work that’s not 2D and it’s blowing my mind to be honest. I don’t know if I’m just doing it with faith beyond reason.

LJ: Sometimes it just takes being out of a classroom setting to explore other things.

GM: Yeah, there’s so much pressure in school. Honestly, I think a big turning point for me has been this recent piece I made out of children’s letter blocks.

You know how I was talking about this overwhelming urge to make one good statement or sentence? So far I’m just getting fragments, but I think that’s okay. I’ve decided to allow myself to just keep making fragments.

LJ: Maybe it’s not really a fragment because you are the subject of everything you’re writing.

GM: Yeah, I think it’s interesting. It says: “In a rush to find comfort,” but it’s also not easy to read and that kind of goes back to the paintings I made. I want to say something, but then I feel the need to mask it either through humor or confounding it some other way.

LJ: Do you have a favorite memory associated with Spudnik?

GM: There’ve been a lot of good times, but the most memorable I think was during the 10th Birthday Bash when me, Yewon, Jess, and Jazmin (they were part of my fellowship cohort) were competing against Hoofprint Workshop in a screenprinting competition with a mini squeegee and a big screen. We did the worst job ever! It was pitiful and we were all trying pretty hard, too. That was pretty funny.

LJ: Do you have an artist(s) that inspired you to want to become one?

GM: I don’t think there’s a specific artist that inspired me. My parents met in grad school in an MFA writing program. My dad’s a painter and my mom writes and is actually writing plays right now which is so cool – she’s really getting back into it. I grew up around all that energy and my parents did a really great job of taking us to museums. I remember seeing my mom’s favorite painting, Time Transfixed by Rene Magritte, at the Art Institute of Chicago when I was young. I’ll always remember her asking me these wonderful and specific questions about it while we stood there looking at it together. My parents did an amazing job educating me about art and they just really wanted me to be an artist. I know that [my family] will blindly support me no matter what. I say that from a place of incredible privilege and I’m very thankful for that. Also, I’m thankful for my family’s goofiness in general.

LJ: What are your current obsessions?

GM: Oh, yes! Here we go: anti-inflammatory diets, Phoebe Bridgers, reading Barron’s SAT vocabulary flashcards, following mid-century modern antique companies on instagram, my dog, Oscar Chavez’s show Fashion Nova Presents: Carpe DM at Chicago Artists Coalition, and of course, Dolly Parton.

If you want to find out more about Grace and her work you can visit her website or follow @gracemakuch on Instagram.

DEADLINE EXTENDED! 2018 Annual Benefit Call for Artwork | Juried by Oli Watt

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO SATURDAY, AUGUST 11, 2018

This opportunity is for members of Spudnik Press only. If you are not currently a member please join or renew prior to submitting artwork.

The Annual Benefit is our largest fundraiser of the year, which raises upwards of $20,000 to be invested in our studio and programs. Each year, the event’s art auction draws upwards of 150 collectors, curators and arts professionals to support Spudnik, bid on art, and discover emerging artists. Past benefit attendees include curators from the MCA, DePaul Art Museum, AIC, Hyde Park Art Center, as well as dozens of gallerists and private collectors.

Building on the success of last year, the auction will once again feature a juried selection of artwork by our members. This year’s member section will be curated by esteemed artist and educator Oli Watt. Each member featured in the auction will have their work framed and receive complimentary admission to the benefit.

This is an exciting and wonderful opportunity for our members to have their work reviewed by an established artist and reach new audiences, as well as a way to support your studio. 100% of the sales from the Benefit Auction will support Spudnik Press Cooperative.

To Participate:

  1. Drop off up to 5 pieces of artwork by Saturday, August 11, 2018.
  2. When dropping off your work, fill out and attach an artwork submission form to each piece. Ask staff or studio monitors for assistance.
  3. All artwork will be reviewed by Oli Watt for inclusion in the Annual Benefit auction.
  4. Members will be notified of acceptance by Friday, August 31, 2018.
  5. Save the date for the October 20th Annual Benefit! Artists selected to be featured in the auction will receive one complimentary ticket and access to discounted tickets for their guests.

Requirements:

  •    Participating artists must be current Spudnik Press members.
  •    There is no participation or entry fee.
  •    Participants may submit up to 5 artworks.
  •    Artwork dimensions must not exceed 22 × 30 inches.
  •    Recent artwork is preferred.

Guest Curator Bio:

Oli Watt is a Chicago-based artist, educator and the curator of Free Range Gallery. Watt received his BFA from the University of Florida and his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he currently serves as Assistant Professor in the Printmedia Department. His work has been exhibited at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Spencer Brownstone, New York, Rocket Gallery, London, and the Terra Museum of American Art, Chicago, to name a few. Watt’s work has also been published in Art on Paper, Art US, New Yorker, New Art Examiner, and the Village Voice. He is the recipient of the Maxine and Stuart Applebaum Award of Excellence and the Tweed Museum of Art Purchase Award.


Corresponding Events:

Bad Wedding Annual Benefit
Saturday, October 20, 2018

Please direct any questions you may have to marcela@spudnikpress.org.

DEADLINE EXTENDED! Call for Artists: Collective Ground | 2018 Annual Member Exhibition

Collective Ground | Annual Member Exhibition
September 7 – October 20, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday, September 7, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO SATURDAY, AUGUST 11, 2018!

This fall, our Annual Member Exhibition will provide an insider view on the art of collaboration, with a focus on the free form exchange of ideas, skills and know-how that takes place daily at Spudnik Press. More specifically, we seek to highlight work that is created collaboratively by our members, whether that is a fine art print, gig poster, zine, or mixed media piece that includes print.

Through this exhibition we celebrate the coming together of different artistic approaches and ideas that emerge from these collaborations, which in turn help craft a deeper understanding of our art practice, each other, and our surrounding communities.

Details:

  • The exhibition is not juried and is open to all Spudnik Press members.
  • There is no entry fee to participate.
  • Participants may exhibit up to 2 collaborative artworks.
  • If work is available for sale, Spudnik Press retains 50% of income from the sale of artwork during the exhibition.

Requirements:

  • Participating artists must be current Spudnik Press members.
  • All artwork must have been partially or fully produced at Spudnik Press.
  • Artwork must be ready to hang.
  • Artwork dimensions must not exceed 22 x 30 in. 
  • Recent artwork made within the last two years is preferred.

To Participate:

  1. Complete the Online Sign Up Form by Saturday, August 11, 2018.
  2. Email marcela@spudnikpress.org with 2-3 hi-res images of your work by Friday, August 3, 2018 to be considered for inclusion in the promotional materials for the exhibition. Please include artist names, title, and year of completion in file name. Images should not exceed 1 MB each.
  3. Drop off artwork by Friday, August 24, 2018.
  4. Pick up artwork by Saturday, October 27, 2018 at 4:00 p.m.

Please direct any questions you may have to marcela@spudnikpress.org. Additionally, if you are interested in participating in the exhibition, but do not yet count with a collaborator, our Member Directory and Member Interviews are great ways to help you get started and learn more about our community of printmakers. 

Professional Practice: Private Tour of EXPO CHICAGO 2018 with Susan Musich

Sunday, September 30, 2018
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
EXPO CHICAGO

Navy Pier – Festival Hall
600 E. Grand Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611

$15 for Spudnik Press Members
$5 for Studio Fellows
Register Online

Art fairs can sometimes be an overwhelming experience due to the sheer amount of artwork on display and the large crowds that they draw. However, don’t let this deter you from being part of the excitement this fall art season and join us for a private tour of EXPO CHICAGO (September 27-30, 2018), led by esteemed colleague Susan Musich.

Susan will orient our group of Spudnik Press members to the fair’s layout and highlight specific galleries among the 2018 exhibitors (Spudnik included!), as well as top artists and artworks. Additionally, during our 60 minute tour, our members will have personalized access to gallery owners and representatives and tailored information about site-specific artworks and exhibitions. The 2018 edition of EXPO CHICAGO will align with Art Design Chicago, an initiative of the Terra Foundation for American Art, to present various programs and events throughout EXPO ART WEEK (September 24–30, 2018) including panel discussions, performances, and activations across the city. For more information about EXPO CHICAGO visit www.expochicago.com.

This program is part of our Professional Practice: Off-site Visit series, intended to introduce members to the numerous and diverse art spaces and individuals that contribute to Chicago’s vibrant arts landscape. In addition to connecting with other professionals in the city, these visits present our members with a range of resources and career paths.

Susan Musich Bio:


Susan Musich is Executive Director of Homeroom, a collaborative, multidisciplinary arts organization. In addition to her role at Homeroom, she manages the tour program at EXPO CHICAGO and is an independent contractor providing content-based, communications, philanthropic, and board development services to arts organizations and foundations. Musich spent 20 years at the Museum of Contemporary Art as an educator and programmer. She was the MCA’s primary lecturer, managed the docent program, created interpretive materials, and worked with art historians, artists, and curators to produce public programs.

Registration Details:
Space is limited to 25 members. Advanced registration is required. The non-refundable registration fee can be paid online. Please note, transportation to EXPO CHICAGO is not provided. Registrants are responsible for providing their own transportation to and from the art fair and for arriving on time. An itinerary of the off-site visit, including instructions on where to meet upon arriving at Navy Pier, will be sent to all registered participants on Thursday, September 27, 2018.

If you are not a member and wish to participate in this off-site visit, please join or renew your membership.

Alumni Highlight: Julia Arredondo

Every year, we welcome three amazing artists unfettered access to our studios through our unique Residency Program. We are excited highlight an alumni from this program, our 2015 Resident Artist, Julia Arredondo and share her post-Residency trajectory.

Julia Arredondo is an artist, writer, budding entrepreneur, and zine maker. She runs two publishing entities, Vice Versa Press and Curandera Press. Arredondo is originally from Corpus Christi, Texas and her mixed Latinx-Italo background has inspired a lifetime of exploration. She cut her chops early by making show flyers and organizing community events; and now she designs, creates, and produces artwork both for aesthetic and functional purposes.  She is currently pursuing her MFA at Columbia Chicago.

Angee Lennard (AL): What were you up to before your residency at Spudnik Press? Were you making lots of art or more in an incubation phase?

Julia Arredondo (JA): Before my Spudnik residency, I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with my Mom in rural Oklahoma. I like to consider my time in Oklahoma an incubation period, where I worked on my websites and developed the vision for my DIY business, Vice Versa Press. I documented old work, re-examined half-written zines, cooked meals for my Mom, cleaned. It wasn’t the most pleasant of times, which is why the residency provided me with such a pivotal opportunity for my practice. There was no future for me in Oklahoma.

AL: During your residency, your main project was developing the zine Guide to Being Broke & Fabulous. Can you talk about your goals for this project?

JA: I had been wanting to write Guide to Being Broke & Fabulous for at least a year. I’d done some time interning at Island Press in St. Louis (which is where the idea initially came to be) and traveling from residency to residency had provided me a life of freedom, but without much cushion and without any luxury. People always asked me how I was able to get around so efficiently, and I wanted Guide To Being Broke & Fabulous to detail the lifestyle that I had grown accustomed to but which was very foreign a concept to a majority of people. My goal was to express the lifestyle of instability, which I think a lot of people romanticize, but to express the ups and downs and the magic that is intertwined with the politics of cool and socio-economic disparity.

AL: Now that it’s been a few years since your residency, can you talk about if or how the Spudnik residency impacted your artistic trajectory?

JA: The residency pretty much put me back on track to having the art career that I worked so hard to attain. I’m still working at it, but the residency provided me with the space and tools necessary to see my vision through without having to pick up and go for the zillionth time. I’m still located in Chicago, and I attribute that to Spudnik Press completely. I’m pursuing my MFA at Columbia College and I’m part of a creative community that would have been near impossible to penetrate without the help of the Spudnik residency. The Midwest art circuit is insular in many ways; Spudnik Press welcomed me into the community, no questions asked.

AL: After your residency, you stuck around Spudnik as a studio artist and are now working towards a masters degree at Columbia College. You’ve mentioned how you’ve enjoyed “infiltrating academia.” Can you share a joy and challenge of heading back to school?

JA: Academia is full of opportunities and this I recognized early on having grown up in a poorer part of the country. Academia was my ticket out of the lifestyle that I had grown up in, and I didn’t want to struggle the way I had watched my family struggle in order to get by. Sure, I struggle in my own way, but the life I’ve chosen is pretty much that…MY choice. Academia has classist and racist tendencies which are obviously problematic, so it’s difficult at times navigating those spaces. And as a person without support from my family, getting a leg up in the art world seemed to require me to talk the talk even if I wasn’t born to walk the walk if you know what I mean. But I’m here regardless, here to infiltrate the bourgeois systems and have a decent time doing it.

My favorite part of going back to school is learning how to read again. I hadn’t realized that I’d lost so much focus in my artistic research practice.

AL: Your work includes DIY zines, punk fliers, craft, and fine art objects, and often it’s hard to tell what category to place your artwork. Is it important to you that these often isolated art forms are brought together? 

JA: Ugh I don’t know, I’m still struggling with all of my different practices that vary so widely. My answer to this dilemma is branding. I have Vice Versa Press, which began as a counter-cultural publishing entity but is transitioning into a lifestyle brand. I have Curandera Press, which is a web shop that specializes in handmade ritual and magic goods. And then I have Julia Arredondo, fine artist and designer looking to make the big bucks. Business is a huge part of my practice, and I’m trying to incorporate my making practices into a sustainable career.

AL: Speaking of sustainability, we recently were talking about the conflict between “punk economy” and sustainability and how value is perceived in different economies. Is your priority to find a way for your own economic sustainability? Or are you more focused on tinkering with these established value systems? 

JA: Hell yes my priority is carving out a sustainable career for myself. Otherwise I’ll be at the mercy of a global economy that places little value on labor by women and people of color. The odds are against me in that market! However, I’m also interested in exploring the alternatives that exist within our capitalist system and playing within that realm that is so incredibly oppressive. Maybe I’m here to troll. It’d be great to bank, but mostly I’m here to work and push boundaries–hopefully without going to jail. That is my real goal.

AL: Do you have any shows coming up soon? Where can people see your art in person?

JA: I’ll be exhibiting with Curandera Press at the Slow & Low lowrider fest in September, but I’m pretty much just working and reading and trying to center myself for the next big project I’m planning to release this year titled “Addicted to the Money”. It’ll be a poetry suite documenting my time working as a Sugar Baby. I’ve got plans to release a cassette tape this year, but I’ve gotta get back to my musical roots for that. It’s been a while. I’m currently off the grid for a month, so the best place to view my art right now is on Instagram via @cop_charmer_69@viceversapress, and @curanderapress.

Where can you read more about Julia?

The Overlook, June 2018
ReMezcla, December 2017
Bmore Art Blog, April 2016
Project Nerd, September 2015
Clocktower Radio, September 2015
Citypaper (Review of Baltimore Breakups), February 2015

Spudnik Press Welcomes 2018 Resident Artists

Spudnik Press Cooperative is excited to introduce the recipients of the 2018 Residency. This summer, we welcome Carris Adams, Holly Cahill, and artist couple Tom Christison and Anita Jung. Each residency will be modified to adapt to the interests and needs of the individual participants, while providing them with the artistic and financial support necessary to create new bodies of print-based artwork.

During their time spent with us, the four artists will partake in a variety of public programs and professional opportunities, as well as activate our space with different happenings during the Chicago Print Crawl on Sunday, June 24, 2018.

2018 Resident Artists

Carris Adams

Carris Adams is a visual artist whose practice visually investigates markers of “domesticated space”. The conceptually multi-layered works seek to inform and position viewers to recognize their assumptions, recall an experience and perhaps note how societal markers materialize in the landscape. Adams received her BFA from the University of Texas at Austin (2013) and her MFA from the University of Chicago (2015). Adams’s work has been exhibited at The Studio Museum in Harlem ( New York, NY) , The Logan Center Exhibitions at The University of Chicago (Chicago, IL), Produce Model Gallery (Chicago, IL) Tiger Strikes Asteroid Gallery (Chicago,IL) and The Courtyard Gallery at The University of Texas at Austin (Austin, TX).

Holly Cahill

Trained as a painter, Holly Cahill uses an exploration of materials and process to engage with ideas connected to choreography, landscape, hyper-dimensional phenomena, and architecture. Her work has been shown at Penn State University, DEMO Project, Chicago Artist Coalition, the David and Reva Logan Center for the Arts, D Gallery, The Franklin, the Hyde Park Art Center, and the Walter Philips Gallery in Banff Canada, among others. She received her BFA in painting from Syracuse University and an MFA from the University of Cincinnati. She has been an artist in residence at the Vermont Studio Center, 8550 Ohio, the Banff Centre, and Ox-Bow. Holly is an artist member of the newest branch of Tiger Strikes Asteroid in Chicago.

Tom Christison & Anita Jung

Tom Christison and Anita Jung are an artist couple who maintain separate studios and studio practices. Both artists explore an aesthetic and political practice that involves recycling and fragmentation. Their work comes from a dedicated practice of making in a world that seems to continuously be on the brink of self- destruction.

Tom Christison is a master of lithography and monotype processes, which he uses to create detailed fantastical prints about life cycles, passages of time, regeneration, and the food chain. Christison’s work may be found in numerous permanent collections including the Corcoran, Washington, DC, The National Museum of American Art, Washington, D.C., the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, Dresden Academy of Fine Art, Kupferstichkabinett, Germany, Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Paris, India Habitat Center, New Delhi, India, among others. He has taught printmaking and drawing at McNeese State University in Louisiana, Ohio University, The University of Tennessee- Knoxville, Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and the University of Iowa. He has also been part of the Master Printmaker in Residence Program at the Robert Blackburn Print Workshop in New York City and a resident at the Plain Museum of Art in Fargo, North Dakota. He maintains a private print workshop, Sandhill Press in Iowa City, Iowa, where his investigations into printmaking take place. Christison studied printmaking and drawing at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Arizona State University in Tempe, where he received an MFA in printmaking.

Anita Jung is a professor at the University of Iowa. She previously taught printmaking, drawing and installation courses at Illinois State University, Ohio University and University of Tennessee. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Arizona State University where she majored in painting and drawing. The Master of Fine Arts was awarded to her from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she worked with Bill Weegee as a printer at Off Jones Road and Tandem Press. Jung has also participated in the international IMPACT conferences in Poznan, Berlin and Tallinn. She was awarded a residency at the renowned Proyecto’ace atelier in Buenos Aires, Argentina, culminating in the exhibition Cuentos de Hadas (Fairytale). Her works of art have been exhibited throughout the United States in juried, invitational and solo exhibitions. Her art has been widely exhibited in juried, invitational and one-person exhibitions throughout the U.S. as well as India, Argentina, Iceland, Puerto Rico, China, England, Germany and Poland.

Image (left to right): Holly Cahill, Through the Eaves, 2013 (detail); Tom Christison, Turnbuckle, 2014-2015 (detail); Anita Jung, Jali Sunyata 27, 2017 (detail); Carris Adams, Bone No. 12 (Abassi), 2016 (detail).

Professional Practice: Portfolio Review with Elizabeth Lalley

Saturday, August 4, 2018
12:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Spudnik Press, 1821 W Hubbard, Suite 302

$20 for Spudnik Press Members
$10 for Resident Artists and Studio Fellows
Register Online

Guest Reviewer: Elizabeth Lalley

In an effort to continue our mission to unite our community of printmakers with art professionals throughout the Chicagoland area we are launching a revised edition of our portfolio reviews this 2018. Professional Practice: Portfolio Review will consist of a 30-minute, individual portfolio review with a curator, educator, gallery director, or arts administrator.

This is a unique opportunity for artists to receive feedback on a current body of work or upcoming project, as well as suggestions on how to prepare for other professional opportunities.

Elizabeth Lalley Bio:
Elizabeth Lalley is a Chicago-based writer and independent curator, and the Assistant Director of Goldfinch Projects. She received an MA in Museum & Exhibition Studies from the University of Illinois-Chicago, and holds a BA from the University of Michingan where she received the Academy of American Poets Award. Lalley has worked for the Chicago Artists Coalition, the Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage, and the University of Michigan Department of English. She is a Curatorial Fellow with ACRE (Artists’ Cooperative Residency and Exhibitions) and a contributor to Newcity and Chicago Artist Writers.

Registration Details:
Space is limited to six artists. Advanced registration is required. The non-refundable registration fee can be paid online. The registration deadline is Friday, July 27, 2018 or when all spaces are full. Exact time slots will be assigned by Tuesday, July 31, 2018.  Registrants are encouraged to arrive 10-15 minutes early to their scheduled appointment.

Last Chance to Support Our 10th Anniversary Campaign

Last June, Spudnik Press Cooperative entered our 10th year or programming. When we reached this milestone, we announced our goal of raising $65,000 from individuals and businesses by June 2018. We are already 80% to our goal and need your support to raise the final $12,833 by June 30, 2018.

Support the Campaign

Your donations are enabling:


Ways to Support our Campaign:

  1. Join our Giving Circle.

  2. Become an Annual Member.

  3. Contribute specifically to the Equipment Fund.

  4. Ask your employer to become a Business Sponsor.

  5. Add a donation when you attend Open Studio sessions.


Make a Donation

Announcing The Frame Shop: Our New Member Program Sponsor

We are excited to introduce The Frame Shop, our newest business sponsor!

Their staff says “Every great artist needs an equally great support system behind them,” and that’s part of why they have committed to offering our members discounted framing services. The Frame Shop staff are seasoned designers and framing consultants who have decades of experience. Plus many are practicing artists that understand the challenges of finding the best way to present your artwork with a limited budget.

Many Thanks to The Frame Shop!

What does this mean for you? Anyone who becomes or renews their membership before 12/31/18 receives:

  • Complimentary 5″ x 7″ frame
  • One time “Buy one, get one” framing discount for all first-time customers of The Frame Shop
  • 20% off all framing through 12/31/2018.

But wait, there is more! Join Spudnik Press today and your membership dues will support the tail end of our 10th Anniversary Campaign. This year-long fundraising effort is allowing our studio to expand our professional development opportunities and establish a reserve fund to ensure we are resilient for years to come.

Member or not, we encourage everyone to support The Frame Shop – a local businesses that is dedicating to supporting their community!

Join the Community! Become a Member!

Professional Practice: Browne Goodwin Private Collection Tour

Friday, June 8, 2018
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (does not include travel time)
Plainfield, IL

$15 for Spudnik Press Members
$5 for Resident Artists and Studio Fellows
Register Online


Have you ever wondered what an art collector thinks about when looking for their next acquisition? What excites them about collecting?

What are the places and spaces collectors visit when looking for new artists?

Have you, as an artist, thought about what you can do to facilitate a relationship with a collector?

Or are you someone interested in starting an art collection, but don’t know how?

If any of these questions have crossed your mind, this June we have a very special opportunity to visit and speak with collector Browne Goodwin. An avid art collector and supporter for more than 45 years, Browne will speak with our members about how he started collecting with his wife and what it is about fostering the career of an artist that he most enjoys. He will also share some of the risks they took with their collection and what he does to stay in touch with artists, galleries, and other maker spaces. In addition to receiving a tour of his collection, members will have an opportunity to guide our discussion with Browne and ask questions of their own.

This program is part of our Professional Practice: Off-site Visit series, intended to introduce members to the numerous and diverse art spaces and individuals that contribute to Chicago’s vibrant arts landscape. In addition to connecting with other professionals in the city, these visits present our members with a range of resources and career paths.

Browne Goodwin Bio:
Browne Goodwin has been an art collector and supporter (with his wife until her death in 2014) for more than 45 years. Involved with many art organizations over the years, Browne is currently a Spudnik Press Cooperative Board Member, is part of the Chicago Artists Coalition Annual Committee, and participates in several museum support groups. His collection includes some 300 works of art in all media, with an emphasis on contemporary art from emerging artists in the communities where he has lived – Los Angeles, Austin, and Chicago. Fine prints form a major portion of the collection, and continue to be added. Browne’s collection will be exhibited at the Illinois State Museum Gallery in Lockport, IL in October of this year.

Registration Details:
Space is limited to twelve members. Advanced registration is required. The non-refundable registration fee can be paid online. Please note, Browne’s home is located in Plainfield, IL. Transportation to and from this off-site visit will be available to members without a vehicle. An itinerary of the off-site visit will be sent to all registered participants on Wednesday, June 6, 2018.

If you are not a member and wish to participate in this off-site visit, please join or renew your membership.

Spudnik Press Welcomes New Cohort Of Studio Fellows

Spudnik Press Cooperative is pleased to welcome and introduce Emma Bilyeu, Dan Manion, Emily Shopp, and Junli Song, the 10th cohort of studio fellows.Through our newly revamped Fellowship Program, these four artists will receive full studio access and participate in a weekly professional development seminar. Throughout twenty sessions, the Fellows will develop the artistic and professional skills needed to build a successful career in the arts. Additional program components work in conjunction to provide mentorship, technical training, meaningful interactions with art professionals, public programming experience, and leadership opportunities.

In addition to developing their personal body of work and partaking in the professional development seminar, each fellow will lead one Open Studio session every week during their 7-month fellowship. They look forward to engaging with our community and being part of a supportive network of artists, as well as sharing their own art practice.

2018 Fellows

Emma Bilyeu is a visual artist working out of her basement studio in Humboldt Park, Chicago. As a student of printmaking and book arts she likes to incorporate paper, letter shapes, book forms, and multiples into her work. With this she is able to explore ideas of communication and storytelling. When not in the studio, Emma is cuddling her dog, reading dystopian or self-help literature, or painting edges of business cards at Rohner Letterpress.

Dan Manion is an interdisciplinary artist and storyteller with an affinity for all forms of visual and auditory narrative. A recent BFA Printmaking graduate of Ohio University, he wishes to continue pursuing printed and moving imagery to expand upon his experimentation with various storytelling forms, which allow us to simultaneously escape, cope with, and confront our own experiences with the world. His narrative goals aim to evoke intimate, visceral and empathetic connections between diverse viewers.

Emily Shopp grew up in Dallas, Texas. In 2013, she received her BFA in Printmaking at Stephen F. Austin State University, where she was the 2012 recipient of the Cole Dean’s Award in Art. Shopp has been included in various juried exhibitions including the ​Printmaking National Exhibition​ at Mark Arts in Wichita, Kansas and ​23rd Arts in Harmony 2018 Annual International Show ​in Hopkins, MN.​ ​She currently lives and works in Chicago, IL.

Junli Song is an aspiring artist and storyteller. She enjoys thinking about how to communicate with the page, both in terms of content and white space. Song is particularly drawn to screenprinting, colour palettes, and beautiful paper, and enjoys artwork that evokes emotion and feeling, with characters that have a strong sense of personality. As a lifelong bibliophile, she dreams of creating beautiful books and telling stories through both words and images.

Spring Membership Drive to Support Our 10th Anniversary

Join Spudnik Press Cooperative as an annual member to both give and receive! We are hosting a Spring Membership Drive in support of our 10th Anniversary Campaign.

Our members are an inspiring group of artists, designers, makers, and creatives. Browse our Member Interviews to get a glimpse into the talented community. Then join our family as an Annual Member!

Why join? The program keeps getting better and better! We have gradually expanded the scope and depth of our membership program to be a comprehensive artistic support package that includes:

In early 2018, we rolled out an entire Professional Practices program catered to the needs and interests of print media artists and exclusively for our members. Current opportunities include a studio tour with Karolina Gnatowski and 30-minute individual portfolio sessions with  review with Meg Duguid with more tours and portfolio reviews scheduled through out 2018.

We truly hope you will become an Annual Member in support of 10th Anniversary Campaign!

Join the Community! Become a Member!