Graphic Arts Workshop

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Graphic Arts Workshop


The Graphic Arts Workshop has been providing Bay Area printmakers with affordable access to printmaking facilities for over 66 years. We are a cooperative and exist solely on dues and the volunteer efforts of our artist members. Our membership forms a diverse community of artists who are unified by their commitment to, and love of, the art of printmaking.

The Graphic Arts Workshop, or GAW, was founded by faculty from the California Labor College in 1952. Their societal concerns were reflected in each artist’s style of work and in the co-operative form of the Workshop. In the early years, members printed posters, leaflets and pamphlets in support of peace and civil rights issues. During the Sixties, the GAW lent space for anti-Vietnam War activities.

Over the years, the GAW membership has included many distinguished artists, undertaken national and international art exchanges, and hosted traveling exhibits. A pamphlet from a 1989 history exhibit offers this sentiment: “In all this, there were no imposed styles or themes. Artist-members as individuals worked freely with a diversity whose common element was the love of printmaking.”