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ARTIST STATEMENT

Because I arrived at making books from being a printmaker I find myself to be a book artist rather than a book binder.

As an artist I have chosen the cornucopia of printmaking as my form of expression. I get excited about ink and paper. The textures, the subtle build-up of sheen in successive ink layers, the gentle dimensionality impressions leave on the sheet, the feel of the printing blocks, the sounds and scents – it’s the whole mix. It is seductive, challenging, often surprising, never boring, and always exhilarating.
Printmaking and book arts share the same birth mother.

My book art extends, explores and reexamines varying artistic disciplines. Making an artist book creates a conceptual and curatorial space to sequence a visual or verbal narrative. Types enrich the work graphically. Sometimes the work is type driven, which I often think of as mark-making. Books substantially aid me as printmaker, provide context, impart rhythm and a pulse, and provide a sculptural dimensionality not commonly found in printmaking.

In employing traditional and exploring new methods of image and book making the results connect us to our past and keep it relevant. It allows us to speak with a contemporary voice grounded in the human experience.

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DIRK HAGNER • INKSWINE PRESS BOOK ARTS

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