July 3, 2020

Summer Vacation: USA Edition

        Since I live in one of the reality-based states, we won’t be having our usual beloved 4th of July Celebrations with music and fireworks, and everyone together at the park by the high school.  Instead we’ll be socially distancing and trying not to make each other sick.  So I’ll do my best to celebrate the USA through block prints instead.
        I’ve made hundreds of prints that are in some way set in the USA, since that’s what’s around me all the time, and I’ve posted hundreds and hundreds more by other artists.  However, I’ll narrow this post down to the sorts of places people might actually go for vacation or as tourists.  So we’ll start in New York City, many people’s introduction to the USA.  My piece is a small scene from a sidewalk market in Chinatown.  You can also see
More views of NYC’s roofs and streets by Whitman and Trueblood.
Night views of NYC and Cleveland by Jacquette
Day views of NYC, Chicago, and Boston here
Views of Boston by Naoko
        As we move up the East Coast toward Boston, I’ll share my second piece: the Jenney Grist Mill in Plymouth, Massachusetts.  This is near the Mayflower landing place “Plymouth Rock” and Plimoth Plantation, and it is a reproduction of the mill built in 1636 by the colonists.  The Mayflower actually first landed at Provincetown, however, and there is a monument there, which you can see in a piece by Zorach, here.
        Still farther north we come to the Portland Head Light in Maine.  You can read more about my process in making this block in a previous post here.  For those of you imagining this vacation from your armchairs, by the way, the ocean off Maine is COLD!  If you want to frolic on a beach, you’ll have to head south.  But first…
see some more views of Maine by Berry
        I’m afraid my representation of the rest of the United States is quite weak.  The last piece of my own that I’ll share with you is a stairway in the formal garden of Dumbarton Oaks, the historic estate in Georgetown (Washington, DC) where the groundwork was laid for the United Nations.  You can see a little of my process (as well as for the Chinatown market above) in a previous post on Working from Photographs.
        Although I’ve made plenty of other pieces that happen to have been inspired by other places in the USA (cows in South Dakota; gazelles and piping plover in California; architectural detail in Rhode Island; college building in New Hampshire; industrial scenes in Massachusetts, Ohio, and Arizona; view from an airplane somewhere over the midwest…) they really don’t show much of distinctive place.  So you’ll have to go with other artists for the rest of your journey.
South Carolina with Taylor
Chicago with Turzak
The Southwest with Morris and Cook
Alaska with DeArmond
Hawai’i with Varez
        And finally, to circle back to the Fourth of July celebrations that will have to be virtual this year, you can revisit a previous post on fireworks.  I hope you enjoy your trip!

[Pictures: Market, rubber block print by AEGN, 2018;
Grist Mill, rubber block print by AEGN, 2015;
Portland Head Light, rubber block print by AEGN, 2014;
Stairway in the Garden, wood block print by AEGN, 1998.]

No comments: