Print Media

The Print Media area is comprised of related courses in Book Arts, Letterpress and Printmaking.  While media-specific in nature, all Print Media courses share the same goal of combining craft and concept within a fine art context.  Faculty in Print Media support and encourage a holistic approach to image and object making. 

Please use the dropdowns below for specialty information concerning Print Media.

Book Arts and Letterpress

In the Book Arts and Letterpress area students learn about historical and contemporary processes within a conceptual and exploratory studio space. Students gain technical skills specific to the topic of study; applicable to other areas of study or interest. Regardless of which media is employed, all Print Media courses promote the foundational principals of conscious making, concept and craft.

In class, we discuss a diverse range of artistic examples, and regularly visit special Collections in the Walker Library, to handle artist’s books. Because of our location, we have access to visit Hatch Show Print in Nashville, an internationally known letterpress print shop that first opened in 1879, and where we have proudly sent many students to intern.

In addition to course offerings, we house the Printing Press Project and work with MTSU Walker Library colleague, Dr. Alan Boehm, to teach about the history of printing to students and faculty using a custom-made printing press. The Printing Press Project physically consists of a replica early 18th century wooden handpress, or Common Press, type and replica implements.

We are proud of the excellent equipment in the Book Arts & Letterpress area, including:

  • 3 cylinder letterpresses: Vandercook No. 4 (type high; Vandercook No. 4 (galley height); Universal 1 (adjustable bed)
  • Proofing press: Vandercook 0
  • Wood type collection (25+ cases, assorted typefaces, new to over 100 years old)
  • Metal type collection (240+ cases, assorted typefaces)
  • Overhead adjustable ventilation
  • Drying racks, assorted sizes
  • Photopolymer platemaker, A4 size, Waterpress 35
  • Photopolymer plate bases: 13”x19” and 6”x9”
  • 2 Macintosh computers (full adobe suite)
  • Large format Epson Stylus Pro 3880 inkjet printer
  • Black and white laser printer, (prints up to legal size)
  • Epson V37 Scanner (letter size)
  • Dahle rotary trimmer, 20” cut
  • Kutrimmer paper and board shear, floor model, 46”x30”
  • Bookbinding cradles (10)
  • Fellowes wire binder
  • Martin Yale Stack Cutter (12” cutting capacity)
  • Antique book press (9”x12” platen),
  • Hollander pulp beater
  • Moulds with corresponding deckles (3 @ 8.5”x11”and 6 @ 11”x14”)
  • An assortment of felts and pellons
  • Refrigerator for temperature sensitive paper additives
  • Paper press with a 6 ton hydraulic bottle jack
  • Shop vacuum

Classes taught include Print Media: Book Arts (ART 3550); Print Media: Letterpress (ART 3770); Topics in Book Arts (ART 4110) with topics including Pop-ups, Movables and Deluxe box making; Studio Workshop (ART 4001) with topics including Art of the Printed Book, Papermaking and more. Our area participates in the Introduction to Latin American Studies course (SPAN 2105/GEOG 2105/ART 2105/ANTH 2105/SOC 2105/PS 2105).

Faculty Teaching in Book Arts & Letterpress:

Kathy O'Connell

Printmaking

The Printmaking area at MTSU is an incubator for artists and designers who seek contrasting experiences of historical and contemporary processes within a conceptual and exploratory studio space.  Students experience a wide variety of print-based media from traditional processes such as etching, lithography, relief and screenrpinting, along side digital, hybridized and experimental processes.  Regardless of which media is employed, all print courses promote the foundational principals of conscious making, concept and craft.

Printmaking sits at the intersection of commercial and fine arts, and the Printmaking area at MTSU embraces this duality and mutability.  Students learn historical processes through introductory assignments, making use of elements and information gained form other coursework in the department.  As students progress in the studio art program, they design semester long projects that utilize printmaking’s expressive power, social engagement, unique material characteristics and potential for multiplicity. 

Printmaking falls under the larger category of Print Media coursework at MTSU along with courses in Letterpress and Book Arts.  

We are proud of the excellent equipment in the printmaking area, including:

  • 3 etching presses (Brand, Sturges, and Takach)
  • 2 lithography presses (Griffin and Takach) 
  • 2 exposure units (Polylite, and Nu-Arc)
  • Hydrobooth and Hydroblaster
  • Darkroom with alternative photography chemicals (cyanotype)
  • Two person Lithography graining sink
  • Collection of medium sized Lithographic Limestones
  • Private digital lab with 5 Macintosh computers (full adobe suite)
  • 2 Large format Epson inkjet printers 
  • 1 letter-sized color laser printer
  • 1 letter-sized black and white laser printer
  • 1 Universal Laser Engraver
  • 2 light tables
  • 2 Cincinnati Silkscreen vacuum presses
  • Private studios for advance students and visiting artists

Classes taught include Screenprint and Digital Processes (ART 2130), Etching and Relief (ART 3140), Lithography and Monotype (ART 4100) and Advanced Printmaking Workshops. Our graduates have gone on to outstanding MFA programs such as the Art Institute of Chicago, The University of Tennessee at Knoxville, the University of Minnesota, Ohio University, the University of Georgia, and many others.

In addition, we host the award-winning Printmaking Links web site, used by printmakers all over the world.

Faculty Teaching in Printmaking:

Nick Satinover

See the Student Works area of the site for examples.

 

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