Chalk Lines, a solo exhibition by Sarah Amos, curated by Barbara Takenaga

Sarah Amos: Chalk Lines
Curated by Barbara Takenaga
October 24 – December 11, 2019

Opening reception: Thursday, October 24, 6-8PM

Exhibition walk-through with Sarah Amos and Barbara Takenaga: Friday, November 22, 6-7PM

CUE Art Foundation is pleased to present Chalk Lines, a solo exhibition by Sarah Amos, curated by Barbara Takenaga. Amos, a Tamarind Master Printer, works with large-scale collagraph prints on felt, built up in layers and adorned with hand-stitching and appliqué. In this new body of work, each print holds a world of dynamic textures, patterns, and abstract marks that are simultaneously familiar and imagined, conjuring tactile environments constructed from the assembled surfaces and images.

Collagraphy is an intaglio inspired practice in which the printmaker incises, abrades, and applies various textural substances to a flat surface. These collages and lines are then hand inked and printed onto another surface, traditionally paper. The techniques employed by Amos during this process are intimately physical; the artist cuts and scratches into cardboard that she uses to apply ink to felt, which she then adorns with free-form stitching. Although she is engaging with the vocabulary of printmaking, Amos strays from its traditions with her use of felt and thread. Sewing with thread by hand breaks the surface of the print and disrupts the conventions of the medium. It also increases the time and labor required to complete each work and evokes associations with historically gendered craft making and the Pattern and Decoration movement. This process results in images that are not only striking for their visual depth, but also for the ways in which their surfaces rise and fall with the accumulation of material, each woven into the next with wandering trails of thread.

Amos’ methods also facilitate play, repetition, and the manipulation of images. By transferring and overlaying these images, the surface becomes a tool for fragmenting or masking the otherworldly figures depicted. Many of the works have been printed on pitch black backgrounds, suggesting that their scenes might take place on a moonless night or in outer space, enveloping the viewer in a blanket of darkness. Sumru Tekin writes, “Working in opposition to the traditions of printmaking and notions of the vernacular, she pushes against fixed identities, gently rejecting the notion of a singular influence…Amos’s work extends beyond cultural specificity, as the materials and visual elements carry open-ended meanings and associations. Amos uses these collected inventions to reconfigure any preconceived readings, setting them in new directions.”

Rendered in shades of bright blue and white, a tall abstract shape extends vertically in the foreground. Its form is built from piles of looping hand-sewn patterns, ending in a narrowed tip with tiny appendages sticking out from all sides. The background is filled with many curled, overlapping patterns and lines in shades of indigo blue.
Sarah Amos, Blue Isabelle, 2018. Collagraph and thread on felt, 84 x 66 inches.

Sarah Amos has been making large multi-media collagraph prints for over two decades. Originally from Australia, Amos came to the US to study lithography at the Tamarind Institute of Lithography in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she became a Master Printer. She originally obtained her BFA in Printmaking in Australia and has an MFA from the University of Northern Vermont. Amos works and lives both in Vermont and Australia, where she also teaches from her home studio year-round and has been an alternate adjunct professor at Williams College, Bennington College, and Dartmouth College since 2001. Amos has completed artist residencies at the Santa Fe Arts Institute, New Mexico; the Ballinglen Arts Foundation, County Mayo, Ireland; and the Stichting Kaus Australis Residency Program, Rotterdam, Holland. Her work is in the collections of Time Warner, NY, NY; Alliance Capitol, NY, NY; the Katonah Museum of Art, Katonah, NY; Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH; the Robert Hull Fleming Museum, Burlington, VT; the Tweed Museum, Duluth, MN; and the Prudential Insurance Company, Boston, MA. In 2014, Amos was awarded the Joan Mitchell Independent Artist Grant for Painting.

Barbara Takenaga is an abstract painter who lives and works in New York City. Her work has been exhibited at a variety of institutions including MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA; Space/42 of the Neuberger Museum, New York, NY; the Bemis Center for Contemporary Art in Omaha, NE; and a 20-year survey at the Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, MA, in 2017, curated by Debra Balken and accompanied by a book published by DelMonico|Prestel. Her work is included in the collections of the DeCordova Museum, Lincoln, MA; the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art in Philadelphia, PA; the Smith College Museum of Art, Northampton, MA; and the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, Los Angeles, CA, among others. She is represented by DC Moore Gallery in NYC and her prints are published by Shark’s Ink and Wingate Studio.

The exhibition is accompanied by a 32-page color catalogue, with texts by Sarah Amos, Barbara Takenaga, and Sumru Tekin. The catalogue is available online and free of charge to gallery visitors. For more information please contact Programs Manager Lilly Hern-Fondation at

Download press release

View catalogue

Catalogue essay: “Tracing Intuitions” by Sumru Tekin


John Yau, “A Fresh Direction for Printmaking,” Hyperallergic, November 30, 2019.
Johanna Fateman, “Sarah Amos,” The New Yorker, November 2019.