Colorado artists celebrate a ‘month of printmaking’ with juried exhibition, events

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Courtesy Wes Magyar/Arvada Center
An exhibition hangs as part of “Mo’Print, the Colorado “Month of Printmaking” at the Arvada Center.

Master printmaker Sue Oehme works in abstraction, but, at its very core, nature is at the center of her work.

“I am inspired very often by the landscape and the color and the light here in Steamboat,” Oehme said. “There's all kinds of visual information that I get from being here, which I love. I love living in Steamboat. It's fabulous.”

Now Oehme is taking her work on the road, showing two site-specific installations for Mo’Print, the Colorado “Month of Printmaking” — a biennial event celebrating the fine art of making original, hand-crafted prints.

Mo'Print showcases 69 events spread mostly across the Front Range with workshops, artist talks, and demonstrations. The Arvada Center is one of the major hosts. The 528.0 Regional Juried Printmaking Exhibition showcases the work of printmakers residing within a 528-mile radius of Denver. The number refers to Denver's elevation and its status as the Mile High City — 5,280 feet above sea level.

Collin Parson, director of galleries and curator at the Arvada Center, has devoted all 10,000 square feet of the Center’s gallery spaces to this biennial event. He describes Mo’Print as a big celebration for the entire region. 

“Institutions such as ours, bigger and smaller, come together to celebrate printmaking in March,” Parson said. 

Eden Lane/CPR News
Sue Oehme's exhibition at the Arvada Center as part of "Mo’Print, the Colorado “Month of Printmaking.”

Oehme’s “Inclusions” is one of three exhibitions at the Arvada Center.  Her bright, huge installations and monoprints use recycled objects to create complicated, multi-layered visuals. Oehme said naming the exhibition was easy “because I include everything. It's kind of like what I'm about — everything and anything goes into my work.”

Oehme’s two site-specific installations for the Arvada Center show are called “Confluence” and “Exploder.” 

“I've been having this feeling of division and separation and just all kinds of anxiety about the world and politics and everything,” Oehme said of “Exploder.”. “But then the ‘Confluence’ piece, I really wanted to pull everything back together. I wanted to have that separation, but somehow visually illustrate that we can understand each other and come together.”

And the exhibitions aren’t just for people who want to view them in person. COVID shutdowns inspired the Arvada Center staff to create an online component as well. 

“So we have an online tour where we offer artists such as Sue and other participating artists to record or transcribe kind of deeper thoughts or deeper meaning or contextualize what they're exhibiting,” Parson said.

The three Mo’Print exhibitions — 528.0: Regional Juried Printmaking Exhibition, Artist Proof: Print Process at Oehme Graphics, and Sue Oehme “Inclusions,” are on view at the Arvada Center until March 24, Oehme will also be giving an artist talk at the Arvada Center on March 15.

Editor’s Note: The Arvada Center is a financial supporter of CPR News. Financial supporters have no editorial influence.