Hillstrom Museum of Art presents Making Your Mark, with works by Claes Oldenburg, Jim Dine, Wayne Thiebaud and others

Posted on November 17th, 2022 by

Judith Cowan (b.1954), Wrench, 1984, color oil stick on wove paper, 22 1/2 x 30 inches, photograph by IA&A, © Judith Cowan

Making Your Mark: Prints and Drawings from the Hechinger Collection, on view from November 21, 2022, through January 27, 2023.  There will be an opening reception for the exhibit on Monday, November 21, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Making Your Mark: Prints and Drawings from the Hechinger Collection features 52 works from the famed Hechinger Collection of tool art.  Over 40 different artists are represented in the works, including by drawings, etchings, engravings, lithographs, gelatin silver photographs, woodcuts, and serigraphs.  Among the artists represented are luminaries such as Berenice Abbott (1898-1991), Jim Dine (b.1935), Walker Evans (1903-1975), Jacob Lawrence (1917-2000), Claes Oldenburg (b.1929), James Rosenquist (1933-2017), Lucas Samaras (b.1936), and Wayne Thiebaud (1920-2021).

The Hechinger Collection was formed by John W. and June Hechinger.  He led the chain of home improvement stores with the Hechinger name that was once ubiquitous in the Mid-Atlantic region of the US until the company dissolved in 1999 after nearly 90 years in business.  The Collection once numbered over 300 artworks that had in common the hardware store and tool theme.  After the dissolution of the Hechinger Company, the Collection, which had been on view in various spaces in the Company’s headquarters outside Washington, DC, was temporarily in the custody of the National Building Museum in DC, until the non-profit International Arts & Artists, organizers of Making Your Mark, took stewardship of it.

Of particular interest among the works for viewers at the Hillstrom Museum of Art is a 1984 paper construction with pen and ink work in the exhibit titled Step Ladder with Can and Brushes, by artist Pier Gustafson (b.1956).  Gustafson, born in Minneapolis, is a 1978 graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College, parent institution of the Museum.  The artist received his MFA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1982, and lives in the Boston area.  His works have been exhibited in the Museum of Fine Arts and the Institute of Contemporary Art, both in Boston, as well as in the Minnesota Museum of American Art in St. Paul.

Making Your Mark focuses on the intricacies of drawing and printmaking techniques.  A first section, devoted to drawing, establishes that medium as the foundation of five distinct printing styles, including intaglio printing (such as engraving, etching, and drypoint), relief printing (such as woodcut and linocut), planographic printing (including lithography), screen printing, and photography, which is a form of printing the name of which derives from the Greek words for drawing and light.

Prior to its appearance at the Hillstrom Museum of Art, Making Your Mark was shown at the Carnegie Arts Center in Turlock, California; the Housatonic Museum of Art at Housatonic Community College in Bridgeport, Connecticut; and the Susquehanna Art Museum in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Following its appearance at the Hillstrom Museum of Art, the exhibit will travel to the Haggin Museum in Stockton, California.

Making Your Mark: Prints and Drawings from the Hechinger Collection is organized and toured by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC.

The exhibit’s appearance at the Hillstrom Museum of Art is supported by a generous grant from the Carl and Verna Schmidt Foundation.

Regular Hillstrom Museum of Art hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and weekends, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.  All exhibitions and related programming are free and open to the public.

Further information can be found at gustavus.edu/hillstrom.

 

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