Born in 1893 in Griffin, Georgia, Dox Thrash served in World War I and studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago between 1914 and 1923. The artist lived for a time in Boston and New York before settling in Philadelphia in 1926. In 1937, at the height of the Great Depression, Thrash joined Philadelphia’s government-sponsored Works Progress Administration (WPA) Graphic Arts Workshop as a seasoned printmaker with a taste for experimentation. While with the WPA, Thrash discovered that gritty carborundum crystals, normally employed to remove images from lithograph stones, could also be used on copper plates to make etchings. The process was quickly adopted and adapted by other members of the WPA workshop, but the compelling imagery and rich chiaroscuro of Thrash’s own carborundum prints have ensured that it is his name that is most closely linked with his innovative method.
This important exhibition features more than 30 works by Thrash, including carborundum mezzotints, the process for which he was famous. The exhibition also includes comparative impressions to demonstrate how Thrash developed his ideas by reworking the copper plates as well as watercolors and drawings, many of which have never been shown.
This exhibition was organized by Dolan/Maxwell Gallery and Georgia College Museum of Art.