The graduate printmaking program offers students the ability to work in a wide range of traditional and alternative printing processes in relief, intaglio, lithography, and screenprint. Students are encouraged to explore varying ways to create and present printed artifacts as multiples or as elements for use in mixed media, installation or interactive work. Emphasis is place on experimentation, multi-layered thinking, and creative problem-solving as a means to developing a personal artistic vision. Faculty members work closely with each graduate student to guide them in finding and refining that vision. Students are also encouraged to broaden their experience by taking courses from other studio areas that serve their needs. Additional learning opportunities occur through visiting artist lectures and hands-on workshops, as well as field trips to museums, galleries, print co-ops, and national/regional conferences.
Graduate print students are given 24/7 access to the well-equipped print studios. Additionally, they are given a semi-private studio near other graduate students in order to create a supportive environment, sense of community, and potential for collaboration. Print Society, our student print club, also offers opportunities for interaction with our undergraduate students.Graduates of our M.F.A. program have taught at national institutions such as Alfred University and Skidmore College while others teach at regional institutions such as the University of Toledo and Owens Community College. Some MFA graduates have taught at community art centers, such as the Sweetwater Arts Center in the Pittsburgh area. One graduate spearheads community-based art projects and works with disadvantaged youth in the Cleveland area. Several graduates have found work in arts management positions: as Arts Admissions Coordinators for universities; as program director for the Brush Creek Ranch Artist Residency Program in Wyoming; as the Program Officer for the Nova Scotia Art Bank; as the Programs Coordinator for the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo; another owned a gallery and print workshop in San Francisco; and another designs, produces, and sells her own line of eco-goods online. Many graduates continue to exhibit their work nationally and many have won awards. Several graduates have also participated in residencies at centers such as the Vermont Studio Center and the Women's Studio Workshop.
Printmaking is housed in several adjacent rooms:
The Intaglio/Relief room is equipped for wood and linoleum block printing, intaglio work in copper, and monoprinting. It houses two presses (Takach and Charles Brand presses), three acid baths, three hotplates, paper soaking trays, an airbrush and spray booth, aquatint box, assorted-sized rollers, inks and various tools for both relief and intaglio work.
The Lithography/Screenprinting room has two litho presses (Takach and Charles Brand), 25 stones of varying sizes and grades up to 20 X 28", three plate-backing slabs up to 30 X 40", various leather and composition rollers, a graining sink, a hydraulic lift, inks and various tools. For water-based screenprinting, screens, drying racks, inks, and assorted sized squeegees are supplied.
The Printmaking Photo darkroom is comprised of two rooms. One room is equipped with two large light exposure units and a large sink. the other room contains two smaller exposure units for photopolymer plates, a mat cutter, a shrink wrapper, a pressure washer, a washout sink, and an archive of past student work.
A general classroom, shared with the Photography area, is used as a lecture room, clean workroom, and critique area.
For additional facilities available, check out our Facilities page.
The Print Society
All students with an interest in printmaking are encouraged to join this active student club. The Print Society organizes field trips, visiting artist workshops, a booth at the Black Swamp Arts Festival, and various activities related to printmaking. Fundraisers, including T-shirt printing events and print sales, are held several times during the year to support Print Society activities. Funding supports visiting artists and student attendance at national and regional print conferences.
Regional and National Printmaking Associations
There are numerous professional printmaking associations in existence and students are encouraged to join these in order to gain a broader understanding of the world of prints. Two of these are:
Mid-America Print Council
is a Midwestern print organization that sponsors a biennial conference of workshops and panel discussions, a members' exhibition, and a newsletter.
Southern Graphics Council International
is a national print organization that sponsors an annual conference of workshops and panel discussions, a members' exhibition, and a journal.
While at BGSU, students develop skills in art-making, visual communication, problem-solving, and critical thinking. Some MFA students go on to use their print expertise in the commercial printing market within collaborative or contract printing workshops or in general arts-related positions. Most print MFA graduates also work as fine artists and exhibit their work.
Students who graduate with a Master of Fine Arts degree are qualified to teach at institutions of higher education such as universities and community colleges. Many galleries, museums and arts organizations also prefer the MFA degree for curatorial and management positions.