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Print exhibit highlights work of Vija Celmins

Print exhibit highlights work of Vija Celmins – New York

Prints of ocean surfaces, star-filled night skies,desert floors and delicate spider webs, among other images by the contemporary artist Vija Celmins, are currently on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through Dec. 29.”The Prints of Vija Celmins,” the first-ever retrospective by this Latvian-born American artist, features some 50 works, including a selection of drawings and artist’s books.

Internationally known for her intensely realistic paintings and drawings and her ability to masterfully render an array of distinctive yet highly subtle marks, Celmins has worked in the print medium since the early 1960s, meticulously rendering details of the natural environment through a careful exploration of process and mark. Derived from photographs rather than direct observation–“the photographs are the subject matter,” Celmins has said–her images dispel romantic notions of nature’s sublime and instead embody a feeling of quietude and remove, according to show organizers.

Highlights include two examples of the artist’s early work in etching and drypoint, “View of Quarry” (1962) and “Utopia” (1963); early lithographs made at Tamarind Lithography Workshop and Cirrus Editions in Los Angeles; and several intaglio works made at Gemini G.E.L. in Los Angeles in the early-and mid-1980s, including “Constellation–Uccello” (1983) and “Alliance” (1983).

SHOW FACTS

“The Prints of Vija Celmins’

Through Dec. 29

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Address: 1000 Fifth Avenue

Phone: (212) 535-7710

Web site: www.metmuseum.org

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