by Mary Wittmer-Etchison
January 12 - March 16, 2007
While earning a BFA at Carnegie-Mellon University, Mary Wittmer-Etchison studied with calligraphy pioneer, Arnold Bank. After studying in Rome and Philadelphia she received a MFA from Tyler School of Art.
Her calligraphic work has been published in Letter Arts Review Magazine and the Calligrapher’s Engagement Calendar. Her fine art work has been shown and sold in internationally juried exhibitions and two solo exhibits.
Former Chairperson of the Printmaking Department at the Indianapolis Art Center and Adjunct Professor at the University of Indianapolis. She has taught a wide variety of college curricula and workshops in the visual arts including Illuminated Initials, Calligraphy, Etching, Monoprint, Lithography, History of Women Artists, Drawing, and Watercolor.
She is currently selling her work in three of the top American Craft Retailers (Agora Arts, Iowa Artisans Gallery, and Portfolio Gallery) and several other galleries in the Midwest.
"My work involves words, narrative, and image. It often takes non-traditional book forms or is book-like in concept and structure. It is referential to historic book making techniques and materials. It uses these materials or their modern equivalents to create imagery focused on themes of ultimate human concern like belief and peace.
I am aroused by the joining of the written word and the visual image. Language stimulates one part of the brain and painting another. Together the two are a powerful combination.
The words “seeing” and “belief” possess extraordinary meaning for visual artists. They hold a web of association for me - becoming apparitions, symbolic and abstract.
Recently my focus has turned to explorations of the natural world. My curiosity has been stimulated by details in my environment and how they transform, shift, evolve, disappear and reappear in a new form. The closer you look at the world, the more turbulent it seems, the farther away from it, the more stable and fixed it seems.
I have always loved the disciplines of intaglio printmaking, painting, and calligraphy I have studied, researched, taught and produced work in all of these mediums. Many of my works involve a combination of these disciplines; it seems a natural process of my work ethic. I hold a deep and serious commitment to share my knowledge and view of the world."