For almost 50 years, Amy Worthen has dedicated herself to the art of printmaking, as both a maker and curator. Worthen’s first prints were made as a high school student in New York City. She studied with the renowned printmaker Leonard Baskin at Smith College, who pushed her to be both an artist and connoisseur. As a graduate student at the University of Iowa, studying under Mauricio Lasansky and others, Worthen began working with the burin which is the engraving tool needed to cut lines into the metal plate used in intaglio engraving, and refined her knowledge and skills. Worthen moved to Des Moines in 1970 and while teaching art classes at the Des Moines Art Center, her extensive knowledge about the history of printmaking was noted by then director Jim Demetrion and allowed Worthen her first forays into curation.
During the past 40 years, Worthen has successfully bridged two careers, as an artist and art historian. Over her career as a printmaker, Worthen has examined fantasy, the landscape, architecture and space throughout the world, calligraphy, and the history of printmaking, along with numerous prints of her two homes, Iowa and Venice, Italy. Her series of seventeen prints accurately and whimsically depicting the ornate interior of the Iowa State Capitol Building have become emblematic of her art inspired by Iowa. In Venice, she examined the many small and intimate passageways or sotoportego that connect the city, which were published in a limited edition book. Both series are illustrative of her affection for her two homes, along with her exemplary skill in depicting architectural space and perspective.
Amy recently retired from her position of Curator of Prints at the Des Moines Art Center. She is known nationally and internationally and has been exhibited in shows in major cities all over the U.S. and included in several shows in Europe. She received her B.A. in Art from Smith College and her M.A. in Printmaking from the University of Iowa. Her prints are in many public and museum collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In addition, she has completed several commission projects for Iowa State University.
Source: Olson Larson Gallery