Amy Namowitz Worthen Biography

Amy Namowitz Worthen




Amy Namowitz Worthen was born 1946 and grew up in the Bronx. She was an art major at the High School of Music and Art, NY. At Smith College (BA in Art, 1967) she studied printmaking with Leonard Baskin. At the Yale University Summer School of Art, Norfolk, CT (Stoeckel Fellowship, 1966) she studied etching with Al Blaustein and Richard Ziemann. She received her MA in printmaking from the University of Iowa, where she studied with Mauricio Lasansky. In 1986-87 she studied lettering-engraving for silversmiths at Sir John Cass College, City of London Polytech.

Based in Des Moines since 1970, she has worked as an artist, teacher, print historian, and curator. She has also spent many years living in Italy, as well as considerable time in England, France, Japan, Istanbul, and India. In 1989, she was a visiting artist at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica di Venezia. Repeated visits to the school triggered an ever-deepening involvement in Venice in her life and her art. She now owns homes in both Venice and Des Moines, and her burins and plates travel back and forth with her several times a year.

Worthen has had forty-three solo exhibitions in the US and abroad. She has participated in numerous group and invitational exhibitions nationally and internationally. Her prints are in many public and institutional collections, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA; the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA; the Cleveland Museum of Art; the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, NY; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC.

Worthen is the curator of prints at the Des Moines Art Center, and has also been a guest curator for exhibitions in the US and abroad. A specialist in the history and techniques of engraving, with particular interest in Northern mannerist engraving as well as twentieth-century and contemporary American and European printmaking, she has written numerous catalogues and articles, and has lectured and demonstrated widely. She is a member of the Print Council of America, and serves on the Visiting Committee of the Smith College Museum of Art.