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2019-2020 Jerome Emerging Printmakers Residency


This August, Highpoint Center for Printmaking invited jurors Keisha Williams (Contemporary Art Department Curatorial Assistant and Artist Liaison, Minneapolis Institute of Art) and Bryan Ritchie (Professor of Art, University of Wisconsin-Stout) to select the recipients of the 2019-2020 Jerome Emerging Printmakers Residency. Now in its 16th year, this program is funded by a generous grant from the Jerome Foundation, and is open to emerging Minnesota printmakers — defined here as artists who show significant potential, yet have not received a commensurate amount of professional accomplishment or recognition regardless of age or recognition in other fields. Highpoint is pleased to award the opportunity to Karmel Sabri, Benjamin Merritt, and Grace Sippy.

The residency grants Karmel, Benjamin, and Grace nine months of access to Highpoint’s artists’ cooperative print studio, technical support, in-progress critiques with invited arts professionals, a culminating group exhibition in Highpoint’s main gallery, professional digital documentation of created artwork, and a $1,000 stipend. Highpoint is extremely excited to work with the incoming residents for the next nine months! 

Each artist has submitted a proposal for what they hope to accomplish at Highpoint:

Primarily working with intaglio processes, Benjamin Merritt will generate a body of text-based work that addresses chronic illness and the language used to describe it. Benjamin’s work is informed by his own experience with Hidradenitis Suppurativa, a chronic autoimmune disease of the skin.

By translating patterns of forced migration into printed imagery Karmel Sabri will create engaging public installations that explore displacement and how it has given rise to new cultures in the context of the Arab American experience. In dialogue with her community, Karmel plans to engineer spaces that ask the question: How do exile and displacement nourish resilience? Deconstructing fabricated nostalgia while reimagining and repurposing displacement as ornamental pattern, the immersive spaces Karmel creates will implicate members of the community into the work.

Grace Sippy will use the residency as a period of technical and conceptual evolution. She plans to create life-sized, figurative images through screenprinting, photomechanical intaglio, and lithographic methods. Large, figurative works are relatable to the viewer and can provide a confrontational experience. Ultimately, Grace will investigate using the gallery as an installation platform for her figures, placing them within the inhabited setting of the audience.

Highpoint would like to thank the Jerome Foundation for making this residency possible and for their 16+ years of support. We’d also like to offer our gratitude once again to our jurors Keisha Williams and Bryan Ritchie for their rigorous evaluation of the applications.

In May 2020, the artists will showcase their work in the Jerome Emerging Printmakers Exhibition at Highpoint. Please mark your calendars to join us for the opening reception Friday, May 1 2020.