In the Fall semester of 2016, on the invitation of the Guest Artist in Print Program (GAPP), Berlin-based artist duo Christian Gfeller and Anna Hellsgârd served as UT Austin’s artists in residence in the Print program. Over the course of ten days, the artists collaborated on the creation of a large-scale silk screen print project titled, Die Wand/Die Mauer.
After Gfeller and Hellsgrâd exhibited at the Visual Arts Center, Die Wand/Die Mauer was deconstructed into smaller units and handed out to various students, alumni and visitors; much like the pieces of the Berlin Wall upon its destruction from which Gfeller and Hellsgrâd took inspiration. Print Lecturer Jason Urban also wrote a review of the exhibition in Art in Print titled ‘Barrier Riff: Gfeller + Hellsgård in Austin.’
Urban writes in ‘Barrier Riff’, ‘Wand and Mauer are both German words for “wall,” but they connote very different things. The former refers to an interior building wall — the wall of a room; the latter specifies something heavier and fortied — most famously, the Berliner Mauer that divided West Berlin from East Germany. The two nouns suggest the distinctly different purposes that can be served by the same simple structure.’
Urban is one of the founders of the Guest Artist in Print Program (GAPP), the visiting artist program of the Print Area within the Department of Art and Art History at UT Austin. GAPP seeks to expose the university community to a combination of emerging and established artists immersed in an expanded print practice. This January, GAPP will bring curator and artist Dr. Paul Laidler and his traveling exhibition, Just Press Print, from the Centre for Fine Print Research at the University of West England. In participation with Austin’s annual PrintAustin city-wide event, the UT Fine Arts Library will host a panel on Saturday, January 28 about the post-digital landscape’s ramifications on the print world titled, ‘Print Futures.’