Exhibition Artist Statement: I came to the Enquirer Collection looking for evidence of Black people and Black stories to inspire my work. After getting acquainted with the collection, I was confronted by the scarcity of such material. It took further explorations in the shelves and conversations with Jim to begin to make connections between the history of the material (of lack there of) and contemporary conversations and events. By reinterpreting and recontextualizing what was available, my proofs and prints are an attempt to tell a modern story using the tools (words and images) from a historic collection.
An Inquiry into The Enquirer Collection: Re-examining the Messages of Mid-century Advertising Blocks
Ben Blount is a Detroit born artist, designer and letterpress printer. He loves books, type, and putting ink on paper. His work often explores questions of race, identity and the stories we tell ourselves about living in America. Ben is a believer in the power of the printed word and shares his passion for print and design speaking to students and educators around the country and as a board member of Artists Book House and Fine Press Book Association. His artists’ books and prints are included in numerous collections including the Chicago Field Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Ben lives and works just north of Chicago in Evanston, Illinois.