Call for Artists: Printmakers needed for Center for Contemporary Printmaking (Norwalk, CT)

Print your large woodcut with BIG INK at the Center for Contemporary Printmaking
For National artists

Event Synopsis: BIG INK is pleased to partner with the Center for Contemporary Printmaking for two one-day large woodcut printing sessions. We’ll be utilizing BIG INK’s giant 48” x 96” mobile etching press to pull prints. If accepted, artists will have two months prior to the event to carve their image into a piece of plywood. BIG INK remains in contact with each participant providing guidance and technical support when needed.  The Center for Contemporary Printmaking (CCP) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the art of the print: intaglio, lithography, monotype, silkscreen, woodblock printing, paper works, book arts, and digital arts. CCP is a unique cultural resource, a place to discover, to experiment, to learn. The entire spectrum of printmaking arts is here to be explored through workshops, edition printing with master printers, exhibitions, community programs, and an Artist-in-Residence Program.

About BIG INK: Our mission is to inspire a greater appreciation for relief printmaking and extend its practice among contemporary artists.  We invite artists, via a call-for-entry application process, to submit a proposal to create a woodcut, at least 24” x 36” in dimension, through  Approximately sixteen proposals are accepted per event and those selected are given two months to carve an image. At the end of the two months, BIG INK meets with the artists at a predetermined space, such as an art center, festival, or community print shop, and helps them print his or her woodcut onto paper. These events culminate in exhibition opportunities and potential sales for the artists who participate.  BIG INK has helped hundreds of artists create new work at venues across the United States.

Event Location: Center for Contemporary Printmaking, 299 West Ave, Norwalk, CT 06850

Deadline for Consideration: Midnight, April 16th, 2018

Event Date(s): Jun 23rd & 24th, 2018

Criteria: BIG INK considers proposals based on the following:

  • Size: Images must be at least 24” x 36” in dimension but not larger than 40” x 96” in dimension.
  • Material: Artists are responsible for securing their own ½” thick plywood, 1/2" MDF or 3/8" Shina for carving and their own carving tools. The plywood or MDF must be ½” thick, the Shina must be 3/8".
  • Originality: The uniqueness of the design will be a major consideration.  A drawing, digital graphic, altered photography, collage, sketch, painting or print are acceptable examples to include with your proposal. Images must be solely created by the applicant.
  • Cohesiveness: The anticipated dimensions of your woodblock should match the format of the image you submit.

Fees: It is free to submit a proposal; accepted artists pay $295 dollars to participate.  This covers all consumable materials for the event including: printing ink, paper, cleaning supplies, and equipment usage.  All that is required of the artist is to bring a fully carved block. 

Benefits:  BIG INK events are best described as a concentrated burst of productive energy bringing together leading artists from throughout the region to network with each other and potential patrons.  We provide the technical expertise and specialized equipment necessary to bring the artist's studio directly to the public in an engaging way. Our mobile printing press, dubbed “The Big Tuna,” has the ability to produce woodblock prints up to 48” x 96”. No other etching press of its size is used for this form of collaborative printing.  In addition, selected participants also receive:

  • Professional Prints: BIG INK assists in the creation of three impressions from each participant's carved block.
  • Video Tutorials: Never made a woodcut or woodblock print? No problem! We've created step-by-step video tutorials to walk you through the whole process.
  • High-Res Photography: We provide a professionally photographed image of each participants work at no additional charge.
  • Curated Exhibits: National and international art venues curate BIG INK exhibits from our growing portfolio. Your work could be featured next!
  • Outreach: We create a page for each participant on our website.  Our web and social outlets receive thousands of views each month and will put your work in front of a larger audience.

Commonly Asked Questions:

Q: Can two artists collaborate on a proposal?

A: Yes, list both names on the application.

Q: Can I submit an existing image with my proposal?

Q: Can I submit an existing image with my proposal?

A: Yes 

Q: If accepted can I change my proposal image after the fact?

A: Yes, as long as it falls within the same aesthetic.

Q: Does my proposal image have to be a certain size?

A: Your proposal image can a small.  It doesn't have to be the same size as your final carved woodblock. 

Q: What time are we expected to arrive at the event?

A: 10 am sharp

Q: How long are we expected to remain after our work is printed?

A: Until 5 pm

Q: Are we expected to attend both printing days?

A: No, but you’re welcome to attend.

Q: How many prints does each artist produce?

A: Three

Q: Can I bring my own paper and print more?

A: Unfortunately, there isn’t enough time to print more.

Q: What type of paper do we use?

A: Masa 

Q: What type of ink do we use?

A: Oil based relief ink, bring an apron and wear work cloths.

Q: Do I have to bring any other materials besides my carved block?

A: No 

Q: Can we print in color?

A: No

Q: How do we transport the finished prints?

A: BIG INK provides newsprint to wrap the work and tubes are provided for those that are mailing work.

Q: Do you have recommendations on where to stay?

A: We use Airbnb most frequently and quality hotels are usually located a short drive away or within walking distance. 

Q: What is the best way to transport the finished block if I'm flying?

A: You may be able to ship your block directly to the venue.  Contact us directly to confirm. When shipping your block please include a return label in the package. This makes shipping your block back home simple.

Deadline: 04-17-2018
Center for Contemporary Printmaking
Norwalk, CT

Contact: Lyell Castonguay