Monday, June 14, 2010

Summer Solstice Benefit 2010 Featured Artist: Mike Houston

Mike Houston is one half of the revered press/collaborative Cannonball Press (part of Philagrafika 2010's Out of Print!), based in Brooklyn. In addition to his work with Martin Mazorra, the other half of Cannonball, Houston is an accomplished artist on his own, working predominantly in woodcut and letterpress.

We May be Slow... & Plunge Router

Houston's woodcut images draw on his experience with his other artistic endeavors (painting, film making, playing music, and carpentry) as well as his travels (a native North Carolinian, Houston currently lives and works in New York, and has worked in Calcutta, India, Siena, Italy and San Fransisco, CA). Houston has built a vocabulary of images based on these encounters, and his commonly used symbols include wood and tools, recurring references to beer and party culture, music genres, especially punk rock and black metal, and fantastic beings.

The complete suite of 10 prints available at Summer Solstice!

Exquisitely rendered in an unmistakably relief-cut style, Houston's images are usually presented in a black-and-white, broadside style that recalls print advertisments. Indeed, several of his compositions are fake ads for items as diverse and silly as a plunge router that sports an LCD screen - presumably for watching Shrek while woodworking - to beers inspired by cat fishermen and embodiments of satan.

Baphomet & Chinkapin

Houston has donated a suite of ten (!) relief cut and letter press prints for Summer Solstice 2010 - Chinkapin, Noodler's Brew, Untitled, Baphomet, Hippy Pellets, Knee-High Moccasins, Plunge Router, We May be Slow..., Solid Oak Underwear, and Greedy Gus. This outstanding set of prints could be going home with you on June 23!

-Dan Haddigan

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