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September 20, 2014

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Goldwell Open Air Museum to open a printing studio Downtown

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Sam Morris

Suzanne Hackett-Morgan and Charles Morgan hope the upcoming Open Air Printers, an offshoot of the successful Rhyolite-based Goldwell Open Air Museum, will serve the etching and litho needs of artists in the Valley.

Shortly after organizing the Goldwell Open Air Museum near Death Valley as a way to preserve the sculptures by late Belgian artist Charles Albert Szukalski and his friends, Suzanne Hackett-Morgan decided to renovate a nearby barn for an artist-in-residency program.

It was a pretty crazy idea, given its remote location—next to the ghost town of Rhyolite and a two-hour drive from Las Vegas. But it’s been successful, garnering grants and drawing artists from all over the country who are interested in its desert solitude.

Problem is, Hackett-Morgan and her husband, Charles Morgan, wanted to better share it with the community in which they live. The solution: They’ve leased the 2,600-square-foot space behind the Arts Factory, currently known as Jack Gallery, for a printing studio, complete with three presses that will serve the etching and litho needs of artists in the Valley.

The program, named Open Air Printers, is an offshoot of Goldwell’s Red Barn program and will offer experienced printers 24/7 access to the equipment, supplies and space for an annual fee. Classes, workshops and scheduled studio time will also be available to other students and artists. Additionally, Open Air will offer services for artists or production companies interested in having limited-edition prints made.

“Goldwell’s had a successful program,” says Hackett-Morgan, a longtime Las Vegas artist. “What we’re doing is unique and being recognized nationally, but we haven’t been able to share it with all of the people of Nevada.”

The lease begins July 1, and Hackett-Morgan expects Open Air to be operational beginning in August.

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