There’s still something of the highway construction worker in Ericka Walker, appointed to the position of assistant professor, Division of Fine Arts, at NSCAD University.
Born and raised in rural Wisconsin, Ericka worked in highway construction between degrees—a Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and Master of Fine Arts from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
“I loved the physical labor, working with my hands and the problem solving,” says Ericka, newly ensconced in the office she shares with fellow printmaking prof Mark Bovey. “There are things the foreman taught me that I still think about.”
That combination of thought, theory, sweat and struggle is what she brings to her work now, both as a printmaker and a teacher.
“In printmaking, you’re finding a synthesis between ideas and art making—the theoretical and personal side of it—along with labor, process and repetition,” she reflects. “It really is a balancing act.”
Now that she’s moved to Halifax and can find her way to her Granville campus office without getting lost, she’s looking forward to getting to know her students. She’s teaching two sections of Introductory Printmaking (PRTM 2000) as well as continuing her own work in lithography. As an artist, she’s interested in early 20th century propaganda posters—posters which pumped up patriotism, industrial growth, war making and agriculture.
“I’m equally fascinated and confused about patriotism,” she muses. “How do we understand these concepts such as honor and duty across time? How does propaganda function today?”
Ericka will have a solo show, I Am? Are You?, at the Anna Leonowens Gallery from Oct. 25 to Nov. 5. Until then, her work can be viewed online at: http://www.erickawalker.com/
|Faculty member Ericka Walker's upcoming exhibition at the Anna Leonowens explores the history of visual propaganda in a series of lithographic posters.|