Obee Editions was founded in 2016 by Tamarind Master Printer, Perry Obee. They are currently located in Black Mountain, North Carolina.
Our mission is to provide national and regional artists of all levels access to the expertise of a professional collaborative printer. We specialize in personalized collaboration and the production of limited, high quality editions of fine-art printmaking.
Obee Edition’s approach is based on the traditional model of the atelier with a master printer working and collaborating closely with the artist to achieve the highest standard of artistic expression in fine print techniques.
What is collaborative printmaking?
Collaborative printmaking is the process of an artist working closely with an experienced master printer to produce original works in printmaking.
Printmaking is a mysterious medium, not just to everyday people, but for many artists too. Working with a master in the techniques of printmaking gives artists the freedom to explore creative processes that were previously unknown or unavailable. Some artists may already be familiar with printmaking, but the equipment and facilities required are not practical to maintain, or they are not motivated to print large editions. Even for artists familiar with printmaking, the expertise of a collaborative printer allows the opportunity to try more ambitious work, have someone else do the labor of printing an edition, and provides exposure to new techniques and potentials for creative output.
However, the true benefit of a collaborative printer goes much beyond just providing technical expertise. The relationship between artist and printer is a magical union that results in artwork that neither one could have envisioned or produced on their own. The process of making a graphic image in print always changes how an artist views image making going forward. Often times the relationship builds and evolves over a long time as artist and printer develop a kindred spirit of true collaboration.
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“Just the process of printmaking allows you to do—not allows you to do things but makes your mind work in a different way than, say, painting with a brush does… And in that way printmaking has affected my painting a lot.”
Perry Obee has been dedicated to printmaking and the graphic arts since 2004 when he took an undergraduate course at Ohio Wesleyan University. He received his BFA in Painting and Printmaking in 2006. For a time he had a life as a painter and received an MFA in painting from Connecticut State University in 2009. He has taught painting, drawing, printmaking, and art history courses at numerous Universities and other institutions including University of Connecticut, Western Carolina University, and University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He was a resident artist in the area of painting at the Vermont Studio Center in 2013.
While in graduate school, Perry met and began working with Tamarind Printer Fellow, James Reed. For the next 10 years Perry worked with Jim in his professional collaborative print studio, Milestone Graphics (www.milestonegraphicsfineprints.com), now in New Haven, CT.
Working in Jim’s shop, Perry learned the technical skills of the medium, the nature of the collaborative relationship between printer and artist, and he learned about the business of running a professional fine art print studio. These experiences gave Perry a passion for teaching and collaborating with artists.
In 2015 Perry moved to Asheville, North Carolina, and set up his own amateur lithography studio. In 2016 he established Obee Editions at his studio in Marshall, NC. He received a grant from the Asheville Arts Council to outfit the studio, and began hosting demos for the community, teaching private classes, and collaborating with local artists on editions of new work. In 2018 Perry was accepted into the Professional Printer Training program at the prestigious Tamarind Institute. After completing the one-year printer training program, Perry was offered an apprenticeship to complete his Tamarind Master Printer certification. At Tamarind, Perry was given the highest available training in lithography and collaborative printmaking, collaborated with professional artists of the highest ranks from all over the world, and is now considered an expert in the field.
After Tamarind, Perry was a Visiting Lecturer in Printmaking at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for two academic years. He oversaw the undergraduate and graduate printmaking department during a period of transition. After completing the visiting position in 2022, Perry was eager to return to the Asheville area with his wife, letterpress printer and book artist, Kimberly Obee (www.wishingflowerpress.com), and open his collaborative print studio. They located a building in Black Mountain and have been running their combined studios ever since.
And in 2021 they welcomed their first child to the family! A little girl who has enriched their lives and given them new drive to set an example and succeed as creative entrepreneurs.