One of the pleasures of licensing is bringing the work of talented artists to a wider audience. In 2012, the New Mexico Museum of Art received a sizable collection of work from the estate of master silkscreen printer, Kate Krasin (American, 1943–2010). We have since developed numerous projects using her sophisticated prints that explore and celebrate the beauty of the New Mexico landscape. Her highly refined work proved that silkscreen, or serigraphy, was not just a medium for photo-transfer T-shirts or simple graphic designs in flat colors. For a single print she might use as many as forty successive screens, all cut by hand, to create a detailed, textured work of art.
Krasin studied the work of Japanese woodblock print artists and fellow Santa Fe woodcut artist Gustave Baumann. though appreciative of the medium, Kate, preferred the “dance” of silkscreen: the process of drawing the sketches, cutting the stencils, formulating the colors, printing by hand. She diluted inks and layered colors to create transparent, ethereal beauty.
Drawn to the southwestern landscape as subject again and again, she felt an affinity for her native New Mexico. “We happen to live in a landscape that is just fraught with color—red rock, turquoise skies, brilliant yellow chamisa, pink and maroon earth—it’s everywhere, so that walking here can make me high. And in New Mexico there’s a definite ancient feeling to the land, a sense of civilizations that have gone before, a pervasive quality that’s sometimes enough to make my hair stand on end. I want that mystery, as much as I can put it in a straight landscape. I try to make pictures of mystery—not just mountains, but rather the feeling, the meaning, of the Earth.”
Her book can be purchased at our museum shops. Pomegranate Communications also offers a current assortment of notecards and other printed projects featuring Kate's work.