Mauricio Lasansky

Mauricio Lasansky: da Vinci 1987 from LasanskyArt

Visiting wood s lot a couple of days ago, two powerful and familiar prints caught my eye immediately for I recognized them as the work of Mauricio Lasansky, even before seeing the name below each. Then I see that he has died this week at the remarkable age of 97 after an amazing life as an artist printmaker.

Lasansky was born in Argentina, and later emigrated to the USA where eventually, in 1945, he became professor (later emeritus) of art and art history at the University of Iowa, where he established a highly respected program in printmaking. He was a very highly skilled graphic artist who used numerous techniques and plates to create his huge prints.

As a printmaker, I’ve been a long time admirer of Lasansky’s work and certainly was influenced by his excellent drawing and graphic style. Some decades ago now, I enjoyed a fantastic monograph about him borrowed from a library; I’ve forgotten the name and must now look for it again. I still remember how very searing, disturbing, and haunting his work is as it dealt with so much of the worst of human conditions. Sadly, I’ve never seen any of his work in person.

Here are two obituaries: a family one in his hometown paper in Iowa and a professional one in the New York Times. To learn more about his art and achievements and see a catalogue of his work, visit his extensive website.

I have mentioned his name in two posts long ago, one regarding Original Prints vs. Reproductions, and one linking to PrintFreak, who wrote about him. I don’t know why I have not written more about this powerful artist before, perhaps because words are not enough.

April 11, 2012 in Other artists, Printmaking by Marja-Leena