Liz Marraffino

Transformations

Current Online Exhibition

Statement

This show reflects the recent transformation in my approach to printmaking through an examination of the metamorphosis in the lives of the animals who inhabit the earth. Endangered fish, birds, and mammals—who are impacted by the furious, relentless pace of climate change—are my primary subject. I am inspired by animal imagery from cave art, as well as extinct creatures, such as dinosaurs, which were eliminated by a climate crisis eons ago.

My process often starts with an etching as a substrate over which I print many layers: monotype, paper litho, collage, and/or collagraph. Through this process the underlying etched image is transformed into something “other.” Recently I have also incorporated sewn elements, embroidering on the print to accentuate linear aspects of the composition. It also adds a delicate three-dimensional aspect to the work.

I would like to thank MGC instructors Vijay Kumar, David Thomas, Nandini Chirimar, and Robin Dintiman who provided help, inspiration, and support during my recent artistic transformation.

The Handkerchiefs

Much like never using the good china, my mother never used these elegantly embroidered handkerchiefs. I discovered them in her dresser after her death though they dated from sometime in the late 1930s or 40s. They lay neatly folded beneath yellowed tissue paper in slim boxes from a Pittsburgh department shore. Pristine but yellowed by time, had she bought them herself? Were they gifts? From whom? Perhaps from one of the soldiers she dated during the War? They hold secrets, stories to tell, imagined fictions someday I might write. But for 30 years they languished in my own dresser drawer.

Recently they seemed with other lovely, never-used accessories and knickknacks, destined for Housing Works. But then I began printing etchings on fabric and the hankies suddenly beckoned to be preserved. These one-of-a-kind prints do not just memorialize my mother—as she was in her youth, passionate about clothing, well-dressed for her office job and for nights of dancing—but they are a peace offering, a bridge across the times that divided us in spite of the love, and laughter that we shared.

 

 

Bio

After studying painting with the late Allen Hart, I discovered Joseph Osina’s monotype class at MGC. He encouraged me to join Vijay Kumar etching class and I was immediately hooked. When I lost my own studio in 2014, Manhattan Graphics became my art home. I treasure its amazingly supportive and inspiring community of fellow artists. I have shown my work in numerous spaces in New York. In addition to various group exhibitions at MGC, I have had solo shows at the Gallery at the Philip Coltoff Center, the New York Theological Seminary, and the Broome Street Gallery. My work has also been exhibited at The Elsa Mott Ives Gallery, The Cabrini Gallery in Dobbs Ferry, Barnes and Noble at Citicorp and the Multi-Media Arts Gallery. My prints and paintings are in private collections in France, Great Britain, and Italy, as well as in the United States. I currently teach monotype at MGC as well as painting at the JCC Manhattan.

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MANHATTAN GRAPHICS CENTER | 250 WEST 40 STREET, 5TH FLOOR | NEW YORK, NY 10018 | 212-219-8783

THANKS TO FRIENDS OF MGC

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs | The Scherman Foundation for its generous and continuing support | New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature | The Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation | The Charles Locke Art Fund | The Jockey Hollow Foundation |  Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation | Friends and MGC members who have made donations to the Center

 

Our programs are supported in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.