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Jim Sherraden from Hatch Show Print Will Speak at Drexel University

January 30, 2006

Hatch PosterJim Sherraden has been creating original artwork based on Hatch Show Print's shop archives since 1992. A Kansas native and Nashville resident since 1977, Sherraden joined forces with Hatch in 1984. Sherraden helped revive the store's past success by concentrating on its poster production and revisiting the imaginative method of letterpress printing. Letterpress dates back to the 15th century, and each unique creation is individually handcrafted and inked onto paper, producing posters that through the years have been established as a downtown Nashville landmark. The Hatch posters and Sherraden's original works re-examine the aesthetic impact on American entertainment, and revisit the curiously colorful world of dancing girls, politics, and music.

When he came to the shop in the mid-1980s, Sherraden, a successful lyricist with his name on more than forty recorded songs, was enthralled by the Hatch archive. He set about to reprint, or "re-strike" the old hand-carved images that derived not only from country music but from the entire spectrum of American entertainment enterprises Hatch served over the years, including minstrel shows and vaudeville, circuses and carnivals, silent film and "talkies," auto and boat races, rodeos and animal shows. During the process of using a single test sheet for multiple jobs on the press, he discovered that the inadvertent overlay of imagery was often as arresting as the single illustration. It must have felt very nearly like art until his friend, sculptor Alan LeQuire, told him, "Anyone can stand behind a press, throw two woodblocks on top and make a poster. You need to take it further and make it your own."

Hatch is owned and operated by the Country Music Hall of FameĀ® and Museum and today produces work for a wide variety of clients including musicians, record labels, and cultural arts organizations.

Jim Sherraden is the co-author of Hatch Show Print: The History of a Great American Poster Shop.

The award-winning Graphic Design program at Drexel University offers undergraduate degrees to approximately 150 students. The program covers print-based and electronic communication design with introductory coursework in environmental design, 3-D design and supportive coursework in typography, photography and design history. The program's four-year curriculum includes Drexel's Co-operative Educational work experience and is in session around the calendar on the quarter system. Drexel Graphic Design students have had work reprinted in Graphis, HOW, Print and have won national and international student competitions.