March 4 - April 15, 2023
From FLATBED CENTER FOR CONTEMPORARY PRINTMAKING:
“The address was 912 West 3rd Street. It was a 19th century 2000 square foot railroad warehouse full of furniture and oddities stored by an entrepreneur who combed auctions. When Katherine Brimberry and Mark L. Smith went looking for a place to park Brimberry’s press and operate their newly formed Flatbed Press in September of 1989, an acquaintance sent them to the third street warehouse to check out some space which was available to rent starting in October. The warehouse faced the railroad tracks just east of the bridge spanning Lamar. Its clear-story skylights illuminated the back 1200 square feet and the price was right for a very tight budget. Already located next to 912 W. 3rd, was the studio of sculptor John Christiansen. Best of all, the view from the front loading dock overlooked the railroad and the lake below. It was perfect. It was positively third street.
After two months clearing, building and modifying the space, they hung out their Flatbed Press shingle. Flatbed began as a studio open to other printmakers by membership on weekends and evenings while Flatbed focused on collaborating with artists to create published editions on other days. Jerry Manson, Master Printer of Editioning, partnered with Brimberry and Smith while Brimberry assumed the Master Printer of Collaboration role. Their first collaborative project was with Jack Hanley, painter and faculty member at UT. Before long, Flatbed had projects underway with Robert Levers, James Surls, John Obuck and Ken Hale. In 1990, Flatbed added two more presses to the business. The largest, a Takach press with a 52” x 105” press bed was briefly touted as the biggest press west of the Mississippi! This giant etching press gave Flatbed the capacity to expand the scale of the print projects. When James Surls sent a seven foot long linoleum block in 1990, he dared them to “print this” and they did. Flatbed built its reputation for innovative projects and skillful printmaking during the years at West 3rd Street working with some of Texas’s best known artists.
Other art studios and establishments took other warehouses on West 3rd Street’s warehouse row. Lucky Strike Editions, Lombardi Gallery, and Bill Hoey set up studios. Electric Lounge opened at the end of the row. Flatbed stayed and flourished at this location for ten years. In late 1999, the business moved to an 18,000 square foot warehouse on East MLK Blvd.
This exhibition does homage to the work of the printers, the artists and publishers who were a part of the first ten years of Flatbed Press at 912 W. 3rd Street. Select works from those first years highlight many of Flatbed’s landmark prints and will be available for sale. The artists represented in Positively Third Street are listed in chronological order of projects at Flatbed.
Michael Ray Charles
Dan RizzieTerry Allen
Trenton Doyle Hancock”
Reception: March 4, 2023 | 6–8 pm
3701 Drossett Drive, Suite 190
Austin, 78744 TX
(512) 477-9328Get directions