Watershed Center for Fine Art Publishing and Research is the professional fine art publishing program at Pacific Northwest College of Art. A research and education extension of the printmaking lab, Watershed is staffed and supported through the MFA in Print Media program. Watershed welcomes visiting artists, researchers, and professional printers as well as the community to collaborate on editions and projects. Through Watershed, Print Media students and faculty are offered unique access to professional experiences working with contemporary artists, galleries, and museums on a range of projects and events. Watershed programming takes place within the numerous labs and community centers in and around campus, but focus heavily within the Vivian and Gordon Gilkey Printmaking Lab at PNCA.
The Watershed Center publishes printed editions and supports collaborative projects with artists including Eli Subrack (Assume Vivid Astro Focus), Regina Silveira, MK Guth, and Storm Tharp, among others. And we have hosted professional printers including James Reid from Gemini G.E.L., Maurice Sanchez from Derriere L’Etoile, and Paul Mullowney from Mullowney Printing. The center also works with groups such as the C3 Initiative and other community based partners and nonprofits on projects that provide a deeper connection with local and regional community on issues that link with our research and values as an institution.
Watershed offers students an educational experience that would be difficult to duplicate in the classroom. Working alongside professionals in the printmaking lab, in addition to taking on assistant positions, fellowships, and internships, it provides our students a unique viewpoint and support network in post-program career development.
Watershed projects and programming are based on both invitation and opportunities that arise through our visiting artist lecture series, connected galleries and institutions, and our broad community of artists and creative makers.
Watershed welcomes one resident artist and/or collaborative project each semester that links into our Collaboration and Research course within the MFA in Print Media program. This course provides a curriculum that supports the confluence of ideas and experiences when professionals works side by side with students. Students work under the guidance of the director and professional printers to conduct research and take on publishing and printing tasks that develop throughout the year.
We also continue to support publishing projects on a yearly basis that not only provide experiences for our students, but also support a collection of work that is available for purchase that supports scholarships, fellowships, travel, as well as equipment purchase and research and development. The available collection can be found on this site or through contacting our staff directly.
Over the years, and through its previous incarnation as PNCA PRINTS, the Watershed Center for Fine Art Publishing and Research has collaborated with:
Melanie Cervantes and Jesus Barraza (Dignidad Rebelde)
Ernest (C3 Initiative project)
Don’t Shoot PDX (community collaborations)
Monica Montgomery (Museum of Impact - Collaboration)
Eli Subrack (Assume Vivid Astro Focus)
Storm Tharp (Fall 2017 Artist in Residence)
Sharita Towne (Spring 2018 Artist in Residence)
XPLANE (poster project series)
Watershed continues to be grateful for our collaborations with the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, the MFA in Print Media, and the Center for Contemporary Art & Culture at PNCA on our Jordan D. Schnitzer Exhibition and Visiting Artist Series. Through the support of these events, we are able to make connections and develop projects with artists who have work in in the collection.
The Jordan D. Schnitzer Exhibition and Visiting Artist Series presents an annual curated exhibition from the dynamic and expansive collection of over 9,000 contemporary prints from the Jordan D. Schnitzer Family Foundation at the Center for Contemporary Art & Culture at the Pacific Northwest College of Art. The series brings an invited artist in connection to the exhibition to engage with PNCA students, faculty, and the public through lectures, studio visits, and collaborations with the MFA in Print Media program.
The Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation is a non-profit organization whose mission it is to make the contemporary prints and multiples from the collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation accessible to qualified museums in diverse communities. Established in 1997, the Foundation has organized over 100 exhibitions that have been held at more than 75 museums. The Foundation also provides supplemental funding for education and outreach in conjunction with related exhibitions and publishes scholarly texts.
The Watershed Center continues to provide an experience for students and our community that could not be duplicated in a traditional classroom setting. Although our collection for sale does provide seed funding for future projects, we are always in need of additional giving to support the research and development of our students and faculty. Please consider a gift to Watershed or the MFA in Print Media program and join our community list for upcoming events and projects.
Matthew K. Letzelter
Matthew Letzelter, Director
Matthew Letzelter is a Portland, Oregon artist who explores his practice through works on paper, print, paitings and photography with a focus on abstracted landscapes. Matthew recieved his MFA in 2003 from Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York, and his BFA in 1998 from University of Florida, College of Fine Arts, Gainesville, Florida. He is currently an Associate Professor at the Pacific Northwest College of Art, where he is Chair of the MFA in Print Media Program and Director of Watershed Center For Fine Art Publishing and Research at PNCA. Prior to moving to Portland, Letzelter was the Master Printer at Stinger Editions and Visiting Professor at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, while also focusing research on digital print mediums. Before moving to Canada, Letzelter worked for Derrière L‘Étoile Studio in New York City as a professional fine art printer. He also worked for Petersburg Press and Suitcase Press in NYC.