CONTACT: efarseth (at) gmail (dot) com
Erik Farseth is a printmaker, zine publisher, and collage artist based in Minneapolis-St. Paul.
Farseth is a three-time recipient of an Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board (2013, 2016, and 2019). In the year 2000 he received an MCBA-Jerome Book Arts Fellowship from the Minnesota Center for Book Arts.
Farseth is a former Chairman of the Stevens Square Center of the Arts, and co-founder of the annual Twin Cities Zine Fest (together with Gerald Prokop). He has curated group exhibitions at Big Table Studio, Gamut Gallery, SSCA Gallery, and other alternative art spaces.
Farseth is the author of the book American Rock: Guitar Heroes, Punks, and Metalheads (Twenty-First Century Books). His writings have also appeared in Punk Planet, City Pages, The Daily Iowan, Downtown Journal, and Maximum Rock’n’Roll.
I am a mixed-media artist specializing in cut paper collage, relief prints, and zine-making.
My current series is an artistic response to a tumultuous era marked by political extremism and the resurgence of atavistic nationalisms as a force throughout the world.
Like my previous storefront installations, this latest body of work is part of a larger project dedicated to the democratic production and distribution of art. Traditional gallery spaces become a jumping-off point for a variety of grassroots media shown and distributed in public spaces.
Images from my original collages and woodcuts are repurposed and recirculated in the form of screenprints, t-shirts (wearable, affordable art), and zines. Even when my artwork isn’t overtly political in its content, it is political in its process.
My interest in “analog” collage grew from my experience making zines (small press publications). Originally produced as photocopy art, the cut-and-paste aesthetic of zines was a direct result of artists laying out the pages by hand. These are the same techniques that I use to create my cut paper collages.
Wielding a pair of scissors in lieu of a paintbrush, new hybridized images are built up from dozens of cut-paper fragments.
Using cultural detritus of the fading “American Century,” these collage “paintings” evoke a candy-coated version of American myth-making — myths then torn apart (literally) to create new meanings.
My relief prints mirror my collage work: cutting away excess material to reveal new shapes.
Printmaking has always been a democratic medium. I do not do “editions,” and I am not in the habit of numbering my prints.
As a printmaker, the ability to generate multiple copies of an image is at the root of my artistic practice.
I’m less interested in the concept of “limited editions” than the idea of printmaking as an affordable form of art.
This is also the reason why I do not number – or edition – my prints.