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About

May Babcock is an interdisciplinary artist based in Providence, Rhode Island. Her studio techniques combine hand papermaking, printmaking, sculpture, alternative process photography, and book-arts techniques, creating artwork that addresses contemporary landscapes. She gathers sketches and materials from each site to create innovative installations and works of paper.

She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting and printmaking in 2008. Directly after, she joined the graduate printmaking program at the Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, earning her Masters of Fine Arts degree in 2011.

Babcock exhibits nationally and internationally, and most recently has shown at The National Taiwan Craft Research and Development Institute, Illinois State Museum, Brown University's Granoff Center for the Arts, and The Center for Book Arts. She has taught courses in printmaking, papermaking, drawing, and two-dimensional design across the country, including Rhode Island School of Design, Women's Studio Workshop, and Pyramid Atlantic Art Center. Recently, Babcock was awarded a RISCA Project Grant, a National Parks Artist Residency, and a Public Art commission from the city of Providence. Additionally, she is the founder of Paperslurry.com, a blog dedicated to promoting the art and craft of hand papermaking. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Hand Papermaking Magazine.

 

Artist Statement

Landscapes are not just something to observe or depict. They are complex motifs that can offer clues to a culture.

I begin with a specific site, where I collect fibers, materials, and drawings to gain a psychological impression of a place, and poignant evidence of human activity. As a hand papermaker and printmaker, I see my work as an adventurous hybrid between the two processes. Experimentation in the studio invigorates my artistic process. Collected fibers turn into paper pulp, pulp used to cast carved woodcuts, create sculpture, form irregular sheets for book-forms and large pulp painting prints.

 

CV

EDUCATION

2011 M.F.A. Printmaking, Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, LA
2008 B.F.A. Painting and Printmaking, Summa Cum Laude, University of Connecticut Storrs, CT

 

SOLO AND TWO-PERSON EXHIBITIONS

2018
Blackstone Watershed, Machines with Magnets, Pawtucket RI
Ebb and Flow VI, unLOCK, Illinois State Museum, Lockport, IL

2017
Ebb and Flow II, Brown Arts Initiative, Granoff Center for the Creative Arts at Brown University, Providence, RI

2016
Ebb and Flow: An Exhibition of Hand Papermaking and Installation WorkSpringfield Art Association, Springfield, IL
Exhibition by May BabcockBlock Island Airport Gallery, New Shoreham, RI

2014
Land Studies: New Work by May Babcock, AS220 Project Space Gallery, Providence, RI

2011
The Latent Landscape, MFA Thesis Exhibition, Glassell Gallery, Baton Rouge, LA
Passing Notes, Gya Gallery, St. Louis, MO
 

SELECT GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2018
RISD Faculty Exhibition 2018, RISD Museum of Art, Providence, RI
Pathways, Baum Gallery Art Museum, Conway, AR
Paper Rock Scissors, Five Points Gallery, Torrington CT
Craft Biennale Scotland 2018: Response to Place, City Art Center, Edinburg, Scotland
Responsive Paper, IAPMA Congress Member Exhibition, Sophia, Bulgaria
International Biennial Paper Fiber Art, The National Taiwan Craft Research and Development Institute, Nantou County, Taiwan

2017
Natura-l Impressions, 3rd International Paper Biennale, City Hall Gallery, Meitar, Israel
Pulp as Portal: Socially Engaged Hand Papermaking, The Center for Book Arts, New York, NY
Paper Possibilities 2017: Exploring a Modest Medium, FVAC Drezner Gallery, Avon, CT
Natural Wonders, Sprout CoWorking Community Gallery, Providence, RI

2016
WORDS: Haiku on Paper, Northern Front Studio Gallery, Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada
8th International Printmaking Biennial of DuoroIgreja Matriz de Alijo, Portugal
5th Connecticut Printmaking Invitational: Multiple Impressions, Real Art Ways, Hartford, CT
Flocked, Blocked, and Stenciled, 186 Carpenter Gallery, Providence, RI
Inspired Landscapes, Gallery 175, Pawtucket RI

2015
2nd Global Print 2015Miguel Torga Cultural Space, Portugal
10x10x10, Pawtucket Arts Collaborative Gallery, Pawtucket, RI

2014
{this is ourselves} Under Pressure, Friends of Dard Hunter 2014 Annual Members’ Exhibition, 1890 Bryan Street Studios, San Francisco, CA

2013
Gumbo: A Collaboration of People and Pulp, Pianos for People, St. Louis, MO
Drawing for a Drawing, Imago Gallery, Warren, RI
Pounds of Pressure: Contemporary Prints in Large Format, Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge, Baton Rouge, LA

2012
Thirty Years of LSU Printmaking, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA
Paper in SpaceBeatrice M. Haggerty Gallery, University of Dallas, Irving, TX
Elevator Projects: FluxswitchBaton Rouge, LA
Uncharted Territories, SGC Navigating Currents Conference, St. Roch Healing Center, New Orleans, LA
5th National Collegiate Handmade Paper Art TriennialCorcoran Gallery of ArtWashington, DC

2011
Chain Letter, Samson Projects, Boston, MA
Boston Printmakers North American Print BiennialJuried by Jim Dine, Danforth Museum, Framingham, MA
Long River Poetry Collective, Gris Gris Lab, New Orleans, LA

2008-2010
Global Visions, Foster Gallery, Baton Rouge, LA
Art Melt 2010, Louisiana State MuseumBaton Rouge, LA
12th Annual Venus Envy, Baton Rouge Gallery, Baton Rouge, LA
No Dead Artists, Jonathan Ferrara GalleryNew Orleans, LA
Real Jobs, Highwater GalleryNew Orleans, LA
Estampa International Print Fair, Madrid, Spain
Bachelor’s of Fine Arts Exhibition, Storrs, CT

 

PUBLIC ART & COMMISSIONS

Blackstone Watershed Papers, Public Art for City of Pawtucket Arts Review Panel Grant, Pawtucket RI - September 2018 

Great Salt Cove Macroalgae, Public Art at PVDFest, Civic Center Parking Garage Facade, Providence RI - June 2018

Ebb and Flow VI, unLock Public Art Installation, Illinois State Museum, Lockport IL - Permanent

Ebb and Flow II, Granoff Center for the Creative Arts, Brown University, Providence, RI, August 2017 - June 2018

The Mind's Eye: Natural Places in Paper, CareLink 20th Anniversary Community Art Project, Providence, RI, 2017

AC Hotel Madison, Madison, WI - Permanent

 

AWARDS, GRANTS, RESIDENCIES

2018
Artist in Residence, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Salt Flat, TX
Public Art Commission for PVDFest, Providence, RI
unLock: Merging Art and Industry, NEA Our Town Grant, Illinois State Museum, Lockport, IL
City of Pawtucket Arts Review Panel Grant, Pawtucket, RI

2017  
Artist in Residence, Absaroka-Beartooth Willderness Foundation (ABWF), Red Lodge, MT
Project Grant for Individuals, Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA), for Pawtucket Paper, Pawtucket, RI
Annual Mural Grant, Brown Arts Initiative, Granoff Center for the Arts, Brown University, Providence, RI

2014
Short Twig Press at Longwood University, Farmville, VA, 2014

2013  
Mass Cultural Council "Our Art of Nature Program", Brush Gallery

2012 
Picante Paper Studio at the Southwest School of Art, San Antonio, TX, 2012
Lottery Award, 5th National Collegiate Handmade Paper Art Triennial

2008-2011  
Full Teaching Assistantship, Louisiana State University
Student Scholarship, Friends of Dard Hunter

2007-2008
Honorific Mention, 4th Place, Estampa International Print Fair
Dean's Award, University of Connecticut
Dean's Purchase Prize, University of Connecticut
Cynthia Reeves Snow Watercolor Scholarship, University of Connecticut
Victor Borge Fund Scholarship, University of Connecticut
J&E Green Art Travel Grant, University of Connecticut

 

TEACHING & PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

Rhode Island School of Design Providence, RI
Instructor, Papermaking, Department of Printmaking, Spring 2018

Founder, Paperslurry.com, 2013-Present

Board of Directors, Hand Papermaking Magazine, 2017-Present

Pawtucket Paper, Instructor, Papermaking from Plants, Southside Community Land Trust, Galego Court Community Farm, 2017-Present

Pyramid Atlantic Art Center  Hyattsville, MD
Instructor, Pulptypes: Hybrid Papermaking and Printmaking, 2017

Women’s Studio Workshop  Rosendale, NY
Instructor, Pulptypes: Hybrid Papermaking and Printmaking, 2016-2017

Snow Farm: The New England Craft Program  Williamsburg, MA
Instructor, Papermaking with Plants, 2017
Instructor, Basic Papermaking and Pulp Painting, 2016

Digital Artist, ALEX AND ANI, Cranston, RI, 2015-2016

Vice President of Publications, Friends of Dard Hunter, 2014-2016

AS220 Community Print Shop  Providence, RI
Instructor, Papermaking Workshops, 2013–2014

Art Director, Bottles Fine Wine, Providence, RI, 2012-2015

Louisiana State University, School of Art  Baton Rouge, LA
Instructor, Introduction to Printmaking, 2011
Instructor, Beginning Drawing, 2010–2011
Instructor, Two-Dimensional Design, 2010
Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Book Arts, 2010
Instructor, Introduction to Lithography, 2009–2010
Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Intaglio, 2008
Teaching Assistant, Introduction to Lithography, 2008

 

JUROR & CURATOR

Curator, Uncharted Territories, SGC Navigating Currents Conference, 2012
Juror, Lagniappe: For Good Measure Printmaking Portfolio, Louisiana State University, 2010

 

PRESS & PUBLICATIONS

4th Edition of PVDFest will fill streets, Providence Journal, April 4, 2018
Babcock Reaches Watershed in Pawtucket, RISD Academic Affairs, February 6, 2018
Issue #19, The Hand Magazine, January 2018
International Paper Fiber Art Biennale Conveys Environmental Concepts, NTD TV, October 13, 2017
May Babcock Makes Paper from Her Environment, Take Magazine, July 12, 2017
One Step at a Time, Pawtucket Times, July 2017
The Creative Process on Display, Woonsocket Call, 2017
Cyanotype, Pulptype, and Paper, Bull & Branch, Friends of Dard Hunter, 2017
Ebb & Flow: A Collaborative Paper Installation, IAPMA Bulletin, by Megan Singleton and May Babcock, 2017
Young Papermakers Today: Three Profiles
Hand Papermaking Magazine, by Aimee Lee, Summer 2016
Intergenerationality, Hand Papermaking Magazine Limited Edition Portfolio, 2016
State Arts Council Announces New Art Exhibit at Block Island Airport, June 8, 2016
Clean Paper: Scenes from May Babcock’s Papermaking ClassPaper Connection, by Lauren Pearlman, October 17, 2014
An Interview with May Babcock at AS220, Big Red & Shiny, by Paulina Perlwitz, May 14, 2014
Papermaking with Artist May Babcock, AS220, by Alison Nitklewics, March 14, 2014

 

LECTURES AND DEMONSTRATIONS

Artist Lecture and Demonstration, Papermaking with Plants in the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness Foundation, Livingston Public Library, Livingston, MT, 2017
Instructor Lecture, Snow Farm: The New England Craft Program, Williamsburg, MA 2017
Typography Basics, RISD Guest Lecturer, The Photobook 5235-01, Fall 2015
Artist Talk: May Babcock, AS220 Media Arts Lecture Series, Winter 2014
Hand Papermaking Demonstration, Brush Gallery, Boston Printmakers North American Print Biennial, 2013

 

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

Friends of Dard Hunter, Vice President of Publications, Executive Council & Board of Directors (ECBOD), 2014–2016, Member 2010–Present
International Association of Hand Papermakers (IAPMA), Member, 2014–Present
SGC International, Member, 2011–Present