Pace Prints is pleased to announce an exhibition of monoprints by Andrew Schoultz. This presentation of unique prints made at the Pace Prints studios is the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery and will be on view at 536 West 22nd Street, April 19 – May 11, 2024.

Known for his murals, paintings and immersive installations, Andrew Schoultz deploys imagery that arises directly from the history of printmaking yet situates it in formats that explode the traditional boundaries of printing. Drawn widely from the illustrations of Renaissance and Enlightenment books, the elements of his compositions are recognizable for their archaic rendering in the strong parallel lines of traditional wood engraving.

However, where 16th Century engravers applied this laborious form of drawing with stoic precision in the service of encyclopedic or religious projects, Schoultz unfurls linework with the freedom of a breaking wave and the force of a comic book explosion. Where book plates adhere to restricted palettes, Schoultz injects his lines with a shifting prism of colors that collide and overlay each other with concentrated optical energy.

Andrew Schoultz worked in the Pace Prints studio with printers Mackenzie Kimler and Sarah Carpenter, drawing figures and patterns on etching and relief plates to be used as the foundation of this series of monoprints. The central figures—the all-seeing owl, the wooden war horse, the leonine beast, the ark-like ship tossed on rough seas—could be familiar elements of fantasy or fairy-tale. Yet, dislocated from a connecting narrative, these motifs become totemic icons of esoteric phenomena, lonely figures locked in a struggle against unseen forces, which enter the prints as waves and clouds of energy in tense overlays of line patterns.

Shoultz positions this as a battle between human creations and the forces of nature. The artist’s vision and printers’ skills come to a point in the virtuosic use of color blends and transitions on the inked plates which embody optical events of fission and radiation. The sharply etched bodies of the subjects dissolve in the visual fallout of layers of oil-based relief inks.

The monoprints were then sent to Schoultz’s studio, where the artist completed them with hand-drawn embellishments and collage over the printed motifs. In several images, the tension of lines, colors and images is enacted on a smaller scale by collaged currency—man-made symbols of stability and authority sublimated by greater natural forces in the tenuous form of leaves and a ship’s sails strained by the power of the wind. On other prints, Schoultz arrays a flock of birds in motion like torpedoes, rendered in an interlocking pattern in a nod to M.C. Escher and the destabilizing effects of Op Art.