On Wednesdays, we look at artist statements or design philosophy statements and discuss the best vocabulary to describe an artwork or design. Today’s piece is a print called Campaign by Emmy Lingscheit of Knoxville, U.S.A.

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This is her artist statement from the Artist A Day website:

Emmy Lingscheit was born and raised in South Dakota. She earned a BFA in painting from St. Cloud State University in Minnesota, and also studied art for a semester at Palacky University in the Czech Republic. She later worked at the Highpoint Center for Printmaking in Minneapolis, first as a recipient of the Jerome Emerging Printmakers Residency in 2006, and subsequently as a member of the Highpoint Print Cooperative. Her work has been included in several national and international juried exhibitions and invitational exchange portfolios. As a Graduate Teaching Associate at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, she taught printmaking and art foundations courses and also traveled to Poland for a residency supported by the printmaking program. She graduated with her MFA in 2012 and continues to make and exhibit work.

Let’s begin by looking at the vocabulary the artist uses to describe her work. She says in the first sentence that she was born and raised in South Dakota. This phrase is a common way to describe where you grew up. She then talks about her Bachelors of Fine Arts (BFA), which is her undergraduate degree, and where she worked after college.

There is a complex sentence in the middle of the paragraph: Her work has been included in several national and international juried exhibitions and invitational exchange portfolios. Juried exhibitions are art shows where the artists must submit their work to a jury, and the jury decides which pieces will get in. A portfolio exchange means that some different printmakers each make an edition of prints and exchange them with each other so that each artist gets a complete set of all the prints. Invitational means that the artists were invited to join the exchange. At the end, she talks about where she worked and her Masters of Fine Arts (MFA), which is her graduate degree.

Let’s also consider the structure of this statement. The artist shares her history – where she grew up, her education, work history, shows, etc. This is more of a shortened resume than a traditional artist statement. It is good information for a job application but doesn’t help us to appreciate or understand her work.

Typically a good artist statement includes a description of the artist’s work, their inspiration and motivation, their process, recent work, a description of how the work has changed over time, and what makes it unique. This is the type of artist statement or design philosophy statement that I present in my Amateur Artist’s Course. If you would like to be able to write or speak about your work in this way, check out my online course.

What do you think of this piece and the artist statement? Do you agree with my comments? Do you have questions about the vocabulary? Do you want to suggest a piece for me to discuss next week? Leave a comment below!

I’ve chosen 5 words or phrases for you to focus on today. They are in bold. If you don’t know them, look up the meaning, synonyms, antonyms, and other forms of these words. You can find links to Merriam-Webster dictionary sites at the bottom of this page.

To see the original post at Artist A Day, click the link below:

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