Katja Oxman
Biography

Maryland artist Katja Oxman has been creating her dazzling, richly textured, color etchings in her precise signature style for over twenty years. Born in 1942 in Munich, Germany, she came to the United States at the age of nine and studied printmaking at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art in Philadelphia on full scholarship from 1962 - 65 and pursued further study at the Academy of Munich, Germany in 1966 where she executed large scale woodcuts. In 1967 she was awarded a prestigious Certificate in Printmaking from the Royal College of Art in London, England where she specialized in etching.
     Oxman's multi-plate aquatint etchings of the past twenty years present complex still lifes of richly patterned Oriental rugs upon which rest an overwhelming array of the artist's treasured objects: opened letters and envelopes; picture postcards from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, and other museums; birds, feathers and nests; potted plants (usually in full bloom and grown by the artist herself); oriental boxes and ripe fruits and vegetables. The objects in her still lifes appear to levitate as a result of the artist's tilted, nearly bird's eye perspective which alludes to Japanese woodblock prints, yet a sense of stability and calm emanates from her minutely detailed printed surfaces and their warm, earthy, subtle range of tones. The thought provoking titles of her prints are often quotations from Emily Dickinson verse and are often allusions to the images' personal, secretive meanings.
     Oxman has been honored with dozens of grants and awards including three prizes from 1996 - 2000 from the National Academy of Design in New York and a Maryland State Arts Council Grant in 2000 which funded in part her recent full color catalogue of etchings from the past two decades (Katja Oxman: Aquatints, essay by John Arthur, 2000). Her work has been shown in numerous museum exhibitions including several at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art in Philadelphia and the National Academy of Design, New York.
     Her etchings are in the permanent collections of these museums as well as the Philadelphia Museum, the New Jersey State Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, the U.S. Department of State, the University of Delaware, the University of Maryland, the American University, Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore and numerous corporate and private collections in the United States and abroad. Steven Scott Gallery has represented the artist since its opening in 1988.      There are currently over twenty different editions available by the artist and all are available for viewing at the gallery. Sizes range from 22" x 23" to 35" x 48" plus frames; prices generally range from $700 to $3600.

Recent Museum Accessions, 2015/2016:

  • Academy Art Museum, Easton MD
  • Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, AR
  • Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas, Austin, TX
  • Boise Art Museum, ID
  • Boston Atheneum, MA
  • Cleveland Museum of Art, OH
  • Des Moines Art Center, IA
  • Detroit Institute of Arts, MI
  • Flint Institute of Arts, MI
  • Fort Wayne Museum of Art, IN
  • Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY
  • Huntington Museum of Art, WV
  • McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, TX
  • Mead Art Museum, Amherst College, MA
  • Minneapolis Institute of Art, MN
  • Mt. Holyoke College Art Museum, South Hadley, MA
  • Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX
  • Museum of Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX
  • National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC
  • Portland Art Museum, OR
  • Smith College Museum of Art, Northampton, MA
  • Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC
  • Spencer Museum of Art, Lawrence, KS
  • University of Maryland, University College, Adelphi, MD
  • Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, Hagerstown, MD
  • West Virginia University, Museum of Art, Morgantown, WV
  • Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia, PA
  • Worcester Art Museum, MA
  • Wright State University, Dayton, OH


Prints 2000 - Present    |    Prints 1990 - 1999    |    Prints 1980 - 1989

 

Etchings from the 2000's


Memory Stirring, 2016
aquatint etching
23 1/2 x 17 1/2"
edition of 50


Held Slanting in the Sky, 2015
aquatint etching
23 1/2 x 17 1/2"
edition of 50


Silence in the Garden, 2013
aquatint etching
12 x 18"
edition of 50


In a Darkened Room, 2012-13
aquatint etching
22.5 x 17.5"
edition of 50


The Seasons Shift
23 1/2 x 17 1/2"
2012


Evening Softly Lit
32.5" x 23.5"
2010


A Meditative Spot
23.5" x 35.5"
2009


In Yellow Hewn
23.5 x 17.5"
2008


Remembered
15.5"x15"
2007


Upon The Windowpane
32.75" x 23.75" 2006


In Transition
22.5" x 17.5"
2004


Corner Of The Evening
22.5" x 17.5"
2004-05


Sound Of Water Over Rock
23.5" x 53.25"
2003


Against The Sky
22.5" x 17.75"
2003


The Beauty of the World Clings
35.25" x 47.25"
2001



An Acre For A Bird To Choose
24" x 30 "
2000




Prints 2000 - Present    |    Prints 1990 - 1999    |    Prints 1980 - 1989

 

Reviews

KATJA OXMAN: AQUATINTS
An Appreciation by Robert Kimbril, 2000

     These exuberant prints by Katja Oxman are composed of broken patterns--of images, objects, and plants--set against other broken patterns.
     The works show great refinement and beauty; they also conceal a visual clash. When Oxman's images and patterns become reordered into her composite works, a sort of art historical debate emerges wherein some of the elements are deconstructed and reassembled into new configurations while others are made to float forward and range themselves across a broken surface as the last components of formal structure.
     There may be a ruse or modernist bias in Oxman's placement of abstract work: when she depicts objects by Rothko or Diebenkorn they move into prominence under bright illumination. They represent points of clarity. Further, their linear geometry reflects or deflects compositional angles in Oxman's own architectural design. Other abstract though less linear works, by de Kooning and others, stand in sharp counterpoint to more traditional images represented in the background.
     Oxman's etched surface, although it emphasizes certain abstract formalities, exhibits no modern flatness: it remains visually porous and can become permeable, opaque, or aqueous by turns. It can obscure, mute, or intensify the visual charge of any part of the pattern by bringing it to lurk behind another image or shift into composition with another passage.
     To "read" Oxman's work through these adroit visual shifts is rich, complex, and utterly beguiling. The miracle of her work is that it has been coaxed and conjured from wearisome and stubborn metal plates