Unnamed Black and White Etching signed and numbered 15 of 20 by the famous California artist Ynez Johnston.  Johnston, Ynez (1920- ) Ynez Johnston was born in 1920 in Berkeley, California. She studied drafting, painting and printmaking at the University of California. The display of her paintings and etchings in an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (1951) was the launch of her career as a successful artist. She has received numerous grants and awards, such as, first place in watercolor at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1952 and Fresno Art Museum's Distinguished Artist Award in 1992.  Johnston's work is characterized by "jigsaw" shapes reminiscent of primitive designs. Her unique style has been influenced by her travels to Italy, Mexico, India and Nepal. She has also done 3 dimensional pieces in collaboration with her husband, writer John Berry, and with ceramic sculptor Adam Mekler.

Please see our other Ynez Johnston colored etching by clicking on Etching above next to Art or CLICK HERE TO VIEW OUR ART GALLERY!

Ynez Johnston creates fantasy worlds using her own personal aesthetic language.

Her exotic works suggest teeming cities, vast landscapes, gorgeous royal trappings and improbable vehicles. Sailors, lovers, kings and mythological beasts vie for positions in the complex compositions. Colors -- jewel-like colors -- create opulent tapestries that mesmerize; even her black-and-white images have a full range of 'colors'.  Ynez Johnston is the subject of a recent monograph by Gerald Nordland and a touring exhibition organized by the Kennedy Museum of American Art.

SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS 1952-1964 Paul Kantor Gallery, Los Angeles, USA 1956 California Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, USA 1967 San Francisco Museum of Art, San Francisco, USA 1975-1988 Adam Mekler Gallery, Los Angeles, USA 1976 Mitsukoshi Gallery, Tokyo, Japan 1981-2000 Tomlyn Gallery, Florida, USA 1992 Fresno Art Museum, Fresno, USA 1996 Kennedy Museum of American Art, Athens, Ohio, USA 1997 Lyman Allyn Art Museum, New London, Connecticut, USA 1998 Santa Crux Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz, USA 1998-99 Schmidt-Bingham Gallery, New York, USA SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 1950 Museum of Modern Art, Penthouse Gallery, USA (three artists) 1952 Metropolitan Museum of Art, National Watercolor Exhibition, USA 1956 Whitney Museum Annual, USA 1955 Third Biennale, Brazil 1969 Unione Fiorentina, Palazzo Strozzi, Italy 1988 �Visions� U.C.L.A. & National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi, India   MUSEUM COLLECTIONS Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., USA Krannert Art Museum, Urbana, Illinois, USA Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, USA Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA East Los Angeles City College (Vincent Price Collection) L.A.

Etching - A printing technique where the lines of the design are drawn onto the metal plate and then bitten (etched or eaten away) by acid.


The best way to describe the etching process is to look and feel a five-dollar bill. Most paper currency is actually an "engraving" because it is hand engraved. The printed lines on the money itself are raised like little hills above the paper surface. The little raised lines come from ink that fills little hand carved "V" shaped valleys in the steel plate on the press at the mint. The carved image transfers to the paper as the plate prints and is re-inked. Currency engravings are the end product of incredible craftsmanship and control of the carving tool point as it is applied to the plate by a master engraver. Engravings, while extremely precise (look at the names of the states on the Lincoln Memorial roof), are limited to a single line technique and the mint is hardly the place for an artist to ex press himself. Etchings, like currency, are prints that also have the raised ink lines produced in roughly the same manner of printing engravings. The difference comes from the way the lines are carved in the plate. Instead of "engraving" a line by hand, the line is scratched, in an infinite variety of ways, through a prepared coating that is resistant to acid. And when the plate is submerged into an acid bath the exposed metal is eaten away into little valleys that hold the ink when the plate is printed. The "etched" plate is more open to express the artist's drawing creatively than a carved engraving plate. Engraved corrections on an etching plate are not uncommon. Some of what the artist gains in creative expression he loses in precision. Etchings for the most part, are printed from soft metal plates, such as zinc and copper, which are more suited to a clean reaction to acid and better-printed quality. These soft metals tend to wear away at the edges of the tiny valleys holding the ink during printing. It is because of this tendency to wear that artists limit printings to one hundred or less etching prints. The smaller the number of prints in an edition the more it is valued by collectors. (But that doesn�t necessarily make the print more valuable.)

This piece appraised at $500.  Selling here for $325.

Color: Black & White
Dimensions: 9"w x 7" h Frame 14" x 16"
Manufacturer Date: Est 1950's
Quality: Excellent
Quantity: 0
Tace Item# 20366
Shipping: We estimate shipping $10 to $18.

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