Mo’Print, or the Month of Printmaking, is a biennial celebration of the art of printmaking in and around Denver lasting through March and April. After winning “Best Arts Marathon” in 2014, this event has garnered anticipation in the arts community and is an excellent way to move around the city while experiencing the central theme of printmaking in galleries, bookbinding and letterpress studios, cafes, bars and museums.
With so many options it’s easy to not know where to begin. To point you in the right direction, here is a guide for the most unique events in Denver, although there are many other participating places and cities which you can peruse at Mo’Print.
Where: 2350 Arapahoe St, Denver
What: Conveners, a group exhibition and scavenger hunt
When: March 4–April 3, Tuesday–Sunday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
The Low Down: This group exhibition highlights the collaborated work of 13 artist printmakers, the result being a diverse room of unique pieces which engage many senses simultaneously. Lindsey Clark-Ryan displays a Guide For Returning, a parachute-like fabric printed with red patterns and letters on the corners asking you to unfold and refold in a certain order, experiencing the message as you complete the instructions. There is even a scavenger hunt, created by Imin Yeh, of handmade wooden stamps by twelve artists, some of which are offsite in these other participating venues: Abecedarian Gallery, Blair Caldwell Library, Coffee at the Point and Space gallery. Visit the rest of RedLine—to the left of the Conveners exhibition—to find stamps and to experience an eclectic mixture of art, sculpture and studios with artists working inside.
Pro Tip: There are six stamps hidden in RedLine, and make sure you look in one place twice.
Where: 29 South Fox St, Denver
What: Mo’Print Studio Tour
When: March 19, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
The Low Down: Ink Lounge is a 3,700 square foot studio space mostly dedicated to screenprinting, though that encompasses a wide range of ventures for this busy place including workshops, parties, commercial printing and a shop for local artists. Stop by to witness the screenprinting process in action and to meet some of the people most thoroughly involved. You will be surprised at the expanse of possibilities that are presented with screen printing and who knows, maybe you will come out of it with a new passion.
Pro Tip: Get certified to work in the Open Studio at one of the Beginning Ink workshops, where you will learn all the basics of screenprinting. Next one is March 26, register here.
Pattern Shop Studio
Where: 3349 Blake St, Denver
What: Shark’s Ink: Collaborations II
When: March 12, 2–4 p.m., April 8, 6–9 p.m., May 6, 6–9 p.m. or any day with an appointment.
The Low Down: Master Printmaker Bud Shark, based in Lyons, is the main theme of this exhibition, where artists who have worked with him display their monoprints, woodcuts and lithographs which were created over the years at the Lyons studio and press. His unusual and inventive techniques draw artists to this studio, where he reports that some come with specific materials and references and others only come with an idea. On March 12, Shark will be present to discuss his process and the collaborations in the exhibition.
Pro Tip: Prints from Shark’s Ink are in the Smithsonian, Museum of Modern Art New York, the Art Institute of Chicago and many other prestigious collections, so take the excellent opportunity to meet the man behind the inspiration.
Helikon Gallery & Studios
Where: 3675 Wynkoop
What: Pixel Palette
When: March 3– April 2, Tuesday–Saturday 12–6 p.m.
The Low Down: A showcase of digitally painted prints from artists all over the States offering a different way of looking at Mo’Print, branching away from woodcuts and lithographs and into a technological world. The artists cover a vast array of subject matter and technique and are sure to please a wide range of viewers.
Pro Tip: Helikon Gallery is a firm believer in creating accessibility to the arts and aims to make everyone’s experience enjoyable, whether you are a newcomer or an art veteran. Don’t be shy.
Dry Creek Press
Where: 2379 South Downing St, Denver
What: Woodblock Concepts: Woodblocks and Their Sketches by Leon Loughridge
When: March 12, 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
The Low Down: Artist Leon Loughridge will be talking about the entire process of his woodblock creations, from the sketches to the completed work. The woodblock prints will be displayed next to the original sketch that inspired them. Loughridge is a Denver native—though he grew up in New Mexico— and owns Dry Creek Art Press where he produces his Reduction Style Woodblocks and limited edition books. Some of his previous work has been exhibited nationally and collected by museums. Here is a chance to see woodblocks through the perspective of an experienced artist.
Pro Tip: Watch the video about Loughridge and his process of making woodblock prints at Dry Creek Art Press.
Where: 3658 Navajo St, Denver
What: Community Print Show
When: March 3–27, Thursday 2–8 p.m., Friday 5–10 p.m., Saturday 12–8 p.m., Sunday 12–5 p.m.
The Low Down: EDGE is dedicated to artists and not to the commercialization of art ventures. The freedom from needing to sell art for profit creates an atmosphere where experimentation and individuality are met with support and encouragement. For Mo’Print, EDGE is presenting handmade prints from EDGE and community artists.
Pro Tip: On Thursday, March 19 EDGE is hosting a free Arts & Craft Lab where you can learn the art of stamping printmaking from 6–8 p.m.
Where: 1300 Pennsylvania St, Denver
What: ConeCut Print Show
When: March 1–April 30, Reception April 1, 4–7 p.m.
The Low Down: Escape the mainstream and dive into the alternative style at the ConeCut Print Show, a Denver original. Artists including The Kwiatkowski Press, Moeh Haywood, Pickle, Emily Moyer and many others reimagine techniques like linocut or woodcut by carving in and printing on traffic cones. Grab a delicious cup of coffee, roasted in Denver, and seep yourself in the subversive spirit of this intriguing take on printmaking.
Pro Tip: Pablo’s does not have wifi so you will have to put your full attention on these pieces while you visit, a worthy—and unique— way to spend some undistracted minutes.
Where: 955 24th St, Denver
What: Patterns of Being Exhibition and Workshops in Printmaking
When: Patterns of Being—March 10-May 28, Tuesday–Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Printmaking with Seeds—March 12 and 23, 6:30–9:30 p.m.
Collagraphs– April 23 and 30, Noon–3 p.m.
The Low Down: In Patterns of Being, artists Morgan Price, Emma Repp and Virginia Diaz use lithography, etching and collagraphs—a printmaking technique incorporating a collage of materials—to portray fictional characters in often humorous or playful ways. Here you can find unusual art that is built with repeating patterns and delight in the patience it must take to make such detailed prints. As the Processus press release states, “their works represent the fears, misadventures, and habits that fill our lives.”
Printmaking with Seeds Workshop:
Get involved in the art of printmaking with this workshop that uses seeds to create prints. Some finished pieces will be displayed in the Dairy Art Center in Boulder in June for a special exhibition.
If you are not sure if you have ever seen a collagraph, be sure to check out the exhibition Patterns of Being to pique your desire. In this workshop, use a collage of materials to create collagraphs that add an interesting flair to your prints. No experience required, just a curiosity and a desire to work with texture.
Cost is $70 for Processus members, $100 non-members plus $20 for supplies for each workshop, visit Processus for more information.