Imperial Calcasieu Museum opens exhibit by printmaker Christopher Latil

Published 2:38 pm Friday, April 12, 2024

“Mercurial Horizons” by Christopher Latil will be available for viewing in the Imperial Calcasieu Museum, 204 W. Sallier St., through June 1.

The exhibition will showcase a collection of innovative printmaking art pieces that “defy conventions and push the boundaries of traditional printmaking.” ICM described the collection as “electrifying,” with colors and textures that  “ignite the senses” and engage the mind.

“Latil’s work intricately weaves together the elegance of the horizon with the rawness of ruined surfaces, offering a poignant reflection on personal growth amidst adversity. Through the juxtaposition of degenerate industrial materials and fine art printmaking techniques, he invites us to contemplate our relationship with nature and resilience.”

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Latil is a Southwest Louisiana native. He earned a Bachelor of Arts from McNeese State University and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Mississippi.

Printmaking is an artistic process in which images are transferred onto surfaces like paper or fabric, but he unconventionally approaches the medium.

Traditional printmaking includes techniques like woodcut, etching, engraving and lithography. These processes often require a dedicated space with tools like a printing press, making the medium inaccessible to some. Latil has worked to defy those limitations.

In an artist statement, he explained that during his graduate studies, he became interested in the concept of accessible printmaking that does not require a “suitable studio environment.” During the exploration of this idea, he challenged himself to “not rely on a press to make prints and explore non-traditional materials.”

The time he took to innovate benefited him after he graduated.

“These experiments from school prepared me for when I got out and had to make it on my own.”

He created his most recent pieces using reclaimed materials and heavy equipment he already had access to, like his vehicle.

“By stepping on carved ceiling tiles, running over torn cardboard sheets with my car, and screen printing on the floor I was able to print from anywhere, free from the limitations of a printing press and other equipment. These modes of printing helped me discover new forms of mark making through the elements of registration and pressure, while also challenging the idea of the traditional printmaking matrix.”

An opening reception for the exhibition will be hosted from 6 to 8 p.m today, April 11. Latil will be present to discuss the pieces and his techniques with guests.

The reception is free and open to the public.

Museum hours are Tuesday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Wednesday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission prices are: Adults for $5, Children for $3 and Seniors for $2.