The works that accompany this statement represent a theme I have been working with in a variety of media for about the past five years. I intend to set a stage that creates a mystery within the imagery. There has been a visible development in my work. Within the kudzu-draped landscape of upstate South Carolina has intrigued me for some time crows have appeared and over time the crow has evolved into new compositions. I am using the crow as a metaphor for mankind in my work.
My time observing the crows around my home and studio has given me some insight into their social behaviors. I enjoy watching and listening to their congregation and distant chat.
The history of the crow in other cultures depicts them at times as the trickster and other times as a positive character. The crows play a simple role in my imagery. My crows are observers and the sentinels of the events that concern me in this world. The crow is an extension of myself in my art.
In the latest drawings and monotype prints the crow as a living form is juxtaposed with the inanimate bone. This visual dialog creates a mystery. My new Ghost Crow series plays upon the bones’ past and the crow’s ghostly contrast of its living self. The earlier and continuance of my “Blind Crow” series are images that suggest to me a sense of innocence in the absence of sight. These crow figures are alone and less active currently.
For me the media of intaglio etching, monotypes as well as oil sticks and oil pastel, provide me with the opportunity and excitement of making marks. The techniques I employ with the oils in the drawings and the methods I use to develop my monotype prints are similar. I build up surface with the oil pastels by drawing back into the paper. The difference is that the drawings tend to retain the surface textures I like, whereas the monotypes have the implied textures instead. My monotypes are developed on two or three individual plates run consecutively. This way each plate will have various colors and techniques in order to develop the richness I desire for the image.
The etchings I do are another process entirely. I enjoy the process of actually sculpting the metal plate to reach the desired tonality, line and texture in the image.
Looking back at my graduate work, which was influenced by my study in Italy, I notice that I still portray mystery and intrigue with my subject matter. There is a narrative quality that beckons for a story to be told or the viewer may find his or her own story within my images.
Easley, S.C., resident Steven Chapp
(b. 1952) is a native of Kansas
City, Mo. For three decades, he has been a steady presence on the South
Carolina art scene, especially in the Upstate. Best known as a expert printmaker,
Chapp has shown in galleries, art centers and museums throughout the region,
including the Greenville County (S.C.) Museum of Art, the Burroughs and Chapin
Museum in Myrtle Beach, S.C., the Spartanburg (S.C.) Art Museum and the Pickens
County (S.C.) Museum of Art and History. He worked on two projects with artists
Christo and Jeanne-Claude, in Kansas City in 1978 and Key Biscayne, Fla., in
1983. In 2011 and 2014, Chapp organized Shifting
Plates I and II, traveling
exhibitions of works by South Carolina printmakers. Chapp is the owner of Black
Dog Press and Studio and retired teacher for the Greenville County School
District. He holds an MFA in printmaking and drawing from Clemson University
and a BFA from Appalachian State University.
Born in Kansas City, Mo. 1952, married to Lora Sager
Education: * 1970- Graduated from high school at Willow Glen H.S., San Jose, Ca. * 1978- received his undergraduate BS Art ed. degree from Appalachian State University in printmaking and drawing. * Received M.F.A. in printmaking and drawing from Clemson University in 1984 * Studied at the Charles Daniel Center For Urban Planning known as "the Villa" in Genoa, Italy first semester of 1983, as part of the Clemson MFA program.
Teaching experiences: * Currently teaching visual arts at Sevier Middle School in Greenville County, S.C. * Taught one semester at Clemson’s Genoa Italy Campus in Italy spring of 1985 * Taught art in the public schools since 1979 * Taught printmaking and drawing classes at the Greenville County Museum of Art * Taught in the Fine Arts Center’s Summer Explore the Arts Program for seven years. * Taught printmaking independently to area artists and teachers in personal studio. * Printmaking instructor with the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities Teacher's Institute/ Summer 2005
Art experiences: * Worked on two projects with Christo and Jean Claude: Oct. of 1978 Wrapped Walkways, Kansas City, MO. and in the spring of 1983 Surrounded Islands, Key Biscayne, Fla.
Publications: * Art works published in two books: Simple Printmaking by Gwen Diehn; Lark Books 2000 * Closet Drama, cover for a book of poetry by Kandie St. Germain published by Bear Star Press 2001. * Artwork accepted in the 2007 Kakalak Poetry, Charlotte, NC.
Workshops/ open studio: * Presented numerous printmaking workshops for Upstate Visual Artists, Converse College, Brevard College, and the School District of Greenville County. * Participated in Greenville Open Studios 2002-06
Selected Exhibitions *2007- June, Art Current Group Exhibit *2007 30th Annual Juried Art Exhibit, Pickens County Museum of Art *2007 March, Upstate Visual Arts Group Show *2006- Nov."Brothers In Art" Exhibition with my brother, Jeffery Chapp at the Pickens County Museum of Art. *2006-Feb. "Conflict and Resolution" a solo exhibit of prints, oil pastels and acrylic paintings at the Conn Gallery, Landrum, SC. *2006- South Carolina Birds; a traveling exhibit currated by Wim Roefs at the City Gallery, Charleston, SC, *2005 -Upstate Visual Artists (UVA) Art In The Park merit award *2005- Artisphere Arts Festival, Invitational artist, Greenville, S.C. *2004- South Carolina Birds Exhibit; Currated by Wim Roefs shown at the Sumter SC. Gallery of Art, and the Burroughs-Chapin Art Museum in Myrtle Beach , SC. *2003-received purchase award for Intaglio print "Shadows at Bend" in Pickens County Museum's S.C. Juried Art Exhibition. *2002- received Best of Show Art in the Park $1000. award *2002- Open Studio Artists exhibit Greenville County Museum of Art *2001- received $500. merit award from the UVA Art in the Park *2000- selected for the UVA , Art in the Park exhibit *2000- Faces of the Upstate, People and Landscapes of Upstate S.C., Furman University; Sponsored by the S.C. Arts Commission. “Views From the Edge.” *1998- Red Door Gallery , Anderson, SC *1994- Art at The Power House National Courage Exhibition, Cleveland, Ohio 2nd Place and monetary award. *1993- Hands at Work: a Celebration of American Book Crafts, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa. *1991- This Years Model, Greenville County Museum of Art *1989- Clemson University MFA Gallery, Alumni Exhibit *1989- American Relief Prints: A Selection Exhibit, Three Rivers Arts Festival, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Va., Charlotte, NC branch; 3 works at Pickens County Museum of Art; Fine Arts Center, Greenville, SC.; AnMed Health Campus, Anderson SC., Clemson University Dept. Of Art, and numerous independent collectors.