Kathleen Kuchar, retired professor at the Fort Hays State University Department of Art and Design, will demonstrate the basics of watercolor monotype printing during an Oct. 7 workshop at Barton Community College.
During the workshop, which starts at 10 a.m., she will explore symbolism and discuss the development of the art once it comes off the press.
Kuchar will also show workshop attendees how to make watercolor monotypes without a press so those who enjoy this medium can continue to work on it from home. Kuchar hopes the attendees will walk away from a fun experience with a greater understanding of this art form.
Some may walk out with a complete piece of artwork they will want to frame and display at home. Kuchar says that is exciting, but not what she is aiming for.
“It’s not really important to have a finished product from a workshop,” Kuchar said. “The goal is to get familiar with the process, open up some ideas and appreciate the medium. If something really good comes out of it and you want to mount it and frame it then that would be just the frosting on the cake.”
About the artist
Kathleen Kuchar grew up on a farm in northeast Nebraska. From a young age, she was fascinated by art and was supported in chasing her passion by both of her parents and her teacher. Kuchar attended Kearney State College in Nebraska (now the University of Nebraska at Kearney) and received her bachelor degree in art.
After graduating, she started an art program at a high school in Minden Nebraska and taught there for two years before attending Fort Hays State University for her masters in art.
Kuchar then went to the Brooklyn Museum in New York for one year of studies before FHSU asked her to be an art professor in 1967, where she taught for 34 years before retiring in 2001.
Until 1991 Kuchar’s artwork was mostly created with acrylic paint. It wasn’t until she attended the Santa Reparata International School of Art in Florence, Italy, for one summer where she discovered her love for watercolor monotype. Monotype is a form of printmaking where only one print is made making each creation unique and one of a kind.
Her work is very youthful and abstract as she, like many artists, reaches into her past to bring out something beautiful.
“My work itself is based off of a lot of imagination, dreams and memories,” she said. “Sometimes I like to make a statement so I’ll have some symbolism like an empty chair. I don’t want it to be too cut and dry so people say ‘oh that is what it means period.’ I want people to interact and come up with their own interpretation; that is what I am really after.”
Kuchar’s work is on display at the Shafer Gallery as part of the Barton County Arts Council Friends and Acquaintances Art Festival, open through Nov. 4. The show is underwritten by the Bill J. McKown Memorial Endowment distributed by the Golden Belt Foundation.