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Image of Eerie Grotto? Okini

William T. Wiley
American, born 1937

Eerie Grotto? Okini

1982

Object Type: Print
Creation Place: North America, American
Dimensions:
20 7/8 in. x 27 3/8 in. (53.02 cm x 69.53 cm)
Medium and Support: Color block print on rag paper
Accession Number: 1999.0006

Credit Line: Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts Association Purchase


William T. Wiley works in the style of West Coast or California Funk Art, which developed in the 1960s and 1970s and continued into the 1980s. Like other artists who worked in this style, Wiley often incorporated autobiographical elements in playful and odd narratives. The use of humor and absurdity allowed Wiley to comment on social and political issues directly without being confrontational.

Wiley based the print "Erie Grotto? Okini" upon his watercolor, "Your Own Blush and Flood," 1982. For the print, Wiley collaborated with master Japanese printmaker Tadashi Toda in the creation of the 26 carved cherry blocks and 85 different colors needed. A hallmark of Wiley's work is his word play and puns. This is especially apparent with the title of this print, which is both a phonetic play on the word "arigato," meaning "thank you" in Japanese and the Americanized interpretation of the word "Okini," which means "thank you" in the region of Kyoto, Japan where Wiley worked.

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