Ben Rak’s Sole surfer (If my clod be washed to sea) 2012. Ben is one of three acclaimed printmakers heading to Grafton for a symposium in March.
Ben Rak’s Sole surfer (If my clod be washed to sea) 2012. Ben is one of three acclaimed printmakers heading to Grafton for a symposium in March.

A milestone fit for print

THIS year marks the 50th year of the Print Council of Australia. There are artistic programs throughout Australia being held to celebrate the PCA's jubilee. The Grafton Regional Gallery has joined in by presenting an exhibition of prints acquired through the PCA and a one-day print symposium.

The exhibition, 50 Years of Print: PCA Print Commission Collection, presents the examples the gallery has acquired each year since 1998 from the council's annual print commission and opens at 5.30pm on Friday, March 18. All members of the public are invited to attend.

The three leading printmakers, G W Bot, Rona Green and Ben Rak, are guests at the official opening. Rona Green is the guest speaker.

Musical entertainment from Bellingen's Honey & Knives, a pay bar by the Friends of the Gallery and complimentary nibbles ensure a delightful background to this free event. Bookings are appreciated for catering purposes.

Rona Green - Slim 2006 1.
Rona Green - Slim 2006 1.

The Print Symposium is being held the next day Saturday, March 19, from 9am to 3pm. The symposium explores the practices in printmaking and works on paper in Australia today. This is being presented by three of Australia's leading printmakers, Ben Rak, Rona Green and GW Bot. Price is $45 for the day, which includes morning tea and lunch. Contact the gallery to book.

Ben Rak is an artist, educator and curator. He was born in California, USA, and grew up on Israel. He is working and living in Sydney where he lectures at the University of New South Wales Art & Design and the Australian National University School of Art, Canberra. He is the co-founder and director of Throwdown Press, a residency-based print facility, which invites artists with no previous experience in the field to produce prints in an attempt to explore the possibilities of printmaking in contemporary art practice.

The gallery acquired a print by Ben Rak in 2012 through its membership of the Print Council of Australia. The PCA commissions 10 printmakers each year to produce a limited edition of prints that are offered to its members. Each year the gallery acquires two prints this way. Printmakers are invited by the PCA each year to apply to be selected for this commission.

La Femina

A selection of prints, drawings and paintings by international, national and regional women artists from our collection are on display in Prentice House. La Femina is a celebration of women artists, a celebration presented by the gallery over the first half of this year. Gosia Wlodarczak, Judy Cassab, Judy Watson, Suzanne Archer, Wendy Sharpe, GW Bot, Maria Kontis and Tracey Moffat are some of the artists whose work is in display. This beautiful presentation is in our Prentice Gallery, which also accommodates our restaurant Rosearia. Come and enjoy both.

Dirtgirl Cate McQuillen

Speaking of women artists, co-creator of dirtgirl, Cate McQuillen, is the guest speaker at the 2016 International Women's Day Breakfast at 7pm Tuesday, March 8, at Vines, 139 Fitzroy Street, Grafton. Cost is $15 a head and you can pay at the door. Bookings can be made by emailing or phoning 0419960370.

Cowper Art Gallery opening

Kerrie Bowles is busy preparing to present 'Revisited' at her Cowper Art Gallery. Revisited, showcases Kerrie's works across a range of media completed over many years. The exhibition open this Friday (March 5) at 10am and the official opening is at 3pm with food and wine.

Printing is the theme this year with the next workshops at Cowper on block printing, shibori and indigo dying and fabric printing. Contact the gallery through Facebook for further information or collect it at the opening on Friday.

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