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Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Farewell Print Portfolio for Exit Art: El Yunque Rainforest Set As Theme


Walton Ford, It Makes Me Think of that Awful Day on the Island, 2011. Lithograph, edition of 50, 22 x 30 inches. Courtesy of the Artist and Exit Art

Walton Ford, It Makes Me Think of that Awful Day on the Island, 2011. Lithograph, edition of 50, 22 x 30 inches. Courtesy of the Artist and Exit Art

Exit Art will unveil the fourteenth print portfolio in the organization’s history at the Editions and Artists Book Fair in New York on November 6.  This project is part of the alternative venue’s multimedia exhibition program entitled SEA, which stands for Social Environmental Aesthetics.  But the portfolio will be Exit Art’s last due to the untimely death this summer of the organization’s co-founder, Jeanette Ingberman, who was the force behind the series.

Founded in 1982, Exit Art is dedicated to producing innovative art programs that explore social, political, and environmental issues. It began life in Soho and moved to Hell’s Kitchen in 2002. Initially emphasizing notions of race, gender, sexuality and equality, Exit Art shifts its focus this year to environmental and social issues with SEA, whose various programs include exhibitions, performances, panels and lecture series. One SEA exhibition that launched last spring chronicled the history of alternative vehicles, while another exposed the process of hydraulic fracturing.

The theme of SEA’s print portfolio is the El Yunque Rainforest in Puerto Rico, one of the most fragile ecosystems in the world that is also among the oldest protected regions in the Western Hemisphere. Exit Art’s directors are working to establish an artist retreat program within El Yunque, which is also the only tropical rainforest in the United States National Forest System. SEA’s portfolio contains prints by Walton Ford, Charles Juhász-Alvarado, Isabella Kirkland, Robert Kushner, Enoc Perez, and Alexis Rockmen. The prints range from abstract to representational: one work, by Robert Kushner, comprises a decorative floral pattern in black and white, while another, by Enoc Perez, offers a haunting depiction of an abandoned hotel and historic landmark located near El Yunque.

Each of the six prints is 30” x 22” (paper size), and is organized within a portfolio box specially made for this series. Included within each portfolio is a print by Papo Colo, Exit Art’s other co-founder and Ingberman’s widower. Each print is produced in an edition of 50, and the initial offering price for each portfolio is $8,000. More information regarding Exit Art, SEA, and past print portfolios can be found on the organization’s website, www.exitart.org.

Enoc Perez, Ponce Inter-Continental Hotel, Ponce, Puerto Rico, 2011. Screenprint with acrylic and watercolor, 30 x 22 inches. Courtesy of the Artist and Exit Art

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