Who is Christi Birchfield? One hell of a cool person if you ask me! Not only is she a professor at CIA, and the Production Manager at INK House, but she is an established artist with work that has been exhibited both nationally and internationally!
After graduating from The Cleveland Institute of Art in 2006, Christi was awarded a printmaking residency at Zygote Press where she spent three months using Zygote as her studio. “I fell in love with the energy and community that Zygote offers,” she said. “Since then, I have worked as shop manager and contract printer at Zygote. INK House is a natural progression to Zygote’s growth. As print jobs came our way for institutions like MOCA and the Transformer Station, we realized the need to expand. INK House is a controlled environment dedicated to the production of fine art prints.”
Once INK House is up and running, Christi will work with artists to help them realize their projects. “It’s an exciting challenge to help artists find a process that best fulfills their vision,” Christi said. She explained how she will also work with staff and interns to help produce editions for these artists, and oversee all equipment and facilities needs.
When asked what she believes makes INK House special, she responded “This is the only contract printmaking studio in the region. On top of that INK House is a house we renovated into a printmaking shop….No easy task! With the amazing vision of David Craun at Bialosky and Partners Architects as well as the hard work and dedication of Modern Contractors, we are proud to call this house our shop. We are committed to running INK House as an entirely green facility. As far as we know, this is the only contract printmaking studio in the country committed to greener and healthier practices in printmaking.”
So why printmaking? Christi expressed there are many reasons why she loves printmaking… but stated the main reason print makes sense for her practice is the element of surprise printmaking offers. “As a printmaker, there is only so much control you can have over a medium. When you run an inky plate through a press the results may be very different than what was anticipated. I embrace this element of chance.”
When asked what she was currently working on… Christi said “Let’s just say, fabric, bleach, body parts, and flowers” leaving the imagination to wonder what great things she will create.
Christi’s is represented by William Busta Gallery and some upcoming exhibitions include Women to Watch opening on April 2nd at the Reinberger Gallery as well as MOCA’s regional exhibition How to Remain Human opening June 12th. I highly suggest you check it out, you won’t be disappointed.