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Meet the Artist
About This Artist
Jerushia Graham is an Atlanta-based print, paper, & fiber artist. She was one of five artists selected by the GA Committee for the National Museum of Women in the Arts to participate in Paper Routes: Women To Watch 2020 which exhibited at MOCA GA. Her work was included in an exhibition sponsored by the Georgia Museum of Art & Lyndon House Museum, Highlighting Contemporary Art in Georgia: Cut and Paste. She earned Book Arts MFA from Univ. of the Arts, & BFA degrees from Univ. of Georgia.
Q&A With This Artist
A: For Craft Week I am showing engravings and block prints. My engravings are done on the end grain of dense hard woods like boxwood, lemonwood, and maple. A few are carved on resingrave or Sintra. I also create relief prints on planks of shina plywood, linoleum, and occasionally MDF board. All the designs are sketch first then transferred to my blocks, carved with hand tools, and hand printed or printed on a small table top press.
A: I have always loved the simple black and white illustrations found in antique books and documents. The wide variety of textures and values that can be achieved through simple lines and gouges never cease to intrigue me. I also love the meditative, repetitive action of carving. It soothes me to get lost in the carve and the first reveal of a block being printed is always a highly anticipated surprise to see how the carving translates when inked.
A: Most of printmaking history is a celebration of Western ideals of beauty. My prints are representations of people of color, our everyday trials and triumphs. Though celebrating an non-Eurocentric image of humanity should not be an unexpected element to encounter in an artistic image, it is too often rare to see representations of beautiful people of color whose bodies are not under duress.
A: My travels as a young girl growing up on military bases taught me to embrace those things that make each of us unique. The social commentary and quiet strength of the work of printmaker and sculptress Elizabeth Catlett and the children’s book illustrations of Leo & Diane Dillon have left deep and lasting impressions. I find encouragement in the podcast “Cut the Craft” and mood in the album “In Defense of My Own Happiness (the beginnings) by Joy Oladokun as well as anything by Tracy Chapman.
A: Craft connects me to my ancestors through the skills and objects they’ve passed down through the years. It also is a universal language that has allowed me to literally connect with people halfway across the world and find kindred spirits. There is an openness that can be achieved more quickly when two people share a respect for craft, process, and technique. I feel blessed to be able to experience the world through the lens of craft.
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