Bill Ritchie's art in California
in the

Lee Altman Collection


"My Father's Farm"

Provenance: Print. Intaglio and relief from etched zinc plate printed in thalo green w/black, blue and yellow. Image 16 1/4 X 22 3/4 in on 20 3/4 X 29 3/4 in Arches Cover. Number 12 from edition of 20. Signed lower right, Bill H. Ritchie. Collections also Gloria Abbenhouse, Betty Balcom, Billie Jane Bryan, Jocelyn Curry and Rick Asher, Everett Public Library, Dr. Charles McCann, Kay Pruvich, Lynda Ritchie, Kathryn Sharp, Nellie Adelle Ritchie Sunderland, Seattle Juvenile Center and others.  

Comment: "My Father's Farm" is named for the real place, where we used siphon hoses for irrigation. Those bright, early mornings were only a farm boy's memory in 1960. When I made this print in 1972, it was in very different world in which I had come to live. The image was composed from a video photograph made in my first video art experiments, using 16 mm film, facing toward Eastern Washington where my father's farm had been. The film was of a sunrise over the Cascade Mountains and the image was my drawing of the same title.

"Bridges Heart 7"

Provenance: 1973 Print. Relief & lithograph. Black, green, yellow, blue, red on Van Gelder Zonen buff with Japanese etching chine colle. 18 X 24 image. A/P signed lower right, Bill H. Ritchie. Other collections include: Robert Adams, Billie Bryan, Spence Guerin, Spike Henderson, Henry Art Gallery, Rainier Bank, Lynda Ritchie, Carolyn Scheve, Anne Schwendiman, Nellie Sunderland, Donnie Wilburn and the Ritchie Family Collections. Also Rainier National Bank, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Henry Gallery and a variation in the Zuckerman Museum of Art.

Comment: "The Henry Gallery Association wanted new members and, as an incentive to join, offered a print. Commissioned to produce the print, I was excited and worked hard, eager to please. It went badly. The harder I worked the uglier the print became. I made plates and pulled many states. Finally I threw out the design entirely. Then it came all at once! A lithograph, from a different series, and using corduroy and soft ground to get the effect of raster lines (from my video work) made for an entirely new direction. Things fell into place and “Bridges Heart” was one of my most successful prints. It’s the only print of mine that the Henry Gallery has in its permanent collection."

Exhibitions and Awards: Puyallup Art Exhibition, "Best in Show," juried by Gervais Reid, et. al., September, 1973. Puyallup WA; Lubbock Invitational, Purchase Prize (State Proof), 1973. Lubbock, TX; Philadelphia Print Club Open Competition. Stewart M. Egnal Prize Purchase Award. Sylvan Cole, Andrew Stasik, Janet Flint, jurors. 1973. Philadelphia PA; Jane Haslem Gallery, 1974. Washington, DC.; National Print Invitational , Georgia Southern College, 1973, Statesboro, GA; 20th Annual Print Exhibition, 1973, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY; 1st Annual Images on Paper, Purchase Award. Feb-Mar, 1973. Springfield Art Association, Springfield, IL

About Lee Altman: He was a student in Bill Ritchie's printmaking classes at the University of Washington, and he had an avid interest in some of the more advanced techniques of lithography such that Bill invited him to use his private studio in order to carry these out. Lee graduated and went on to study at Stanford University where he got his Master of Fine Arts and stayed on to be an assistant to the renowned artist and professor Nathan Olivera. Lee's website is

Works by Lee Altman

in the Ritchie FamilyCollection

Specifications: Print by Lee Altman. Intaglio. Sienna ink image of chicken, 14 3/4 x 12 in. on natural mould-made 21 1/2 x 16 1/2 inch Van Gelder Zonen paper. Signed, A/P.

Comment: Among those ground-breaking students in my art classes in the 1970s was Lee Altman. He was a serious guy when he was a student at the UW Art school, plus he was a partner/assistant in my basement studio. I think he came for some peace and quiet, as the printmaking studios at the UW were busy, sometimes contentious places and for his work he needed quiet. He went to Stanford after the UW, and stayed in California where he continues to work.


Specifications: 1974 Print by Lee Altman. Lithograph. White-line manner, on black, lithograph of woman in profile image. 11 3/8 x 8 1/4 in. on natural colored 18 1/2 x 14 5/8 in. Signed, number A/P.

Comment: I greatly admired Lee's work with crayon manner lithographs and the way he made his plates. He became a studio mate for awhile, working in my basement studio on Halladay Street. Lee was my student at the UW Art school in the 1970s, but I think he wanted to find some peace and quiet, so he worked both at the school and in my studio.


Specifications: 1973 print by Lee Altman. Lithograph. Crayon-manner, black-and-white lithograph image of skull and hand. 10 x 16 1/2 in. on natural buff colored 16 x 22 inch paper. Signed, number A/P.

Comment: One time--it must have been in the early '80s, I called an Emergency Meeting and Lee Altman, was my student at the UW Art school in the 1970s, happened to be in town and he came to my house. It was a crazy meeting of a half-dozen former students plus Stephen Hazel and KR--something precipitated by a comment in the newspaper. Lee had gone to get his MFA degree at Stanford University, and stayed in California after that..


Specifications: 1973 print by Lee Altman. Lithograph. 14 3/4 x 12 inch image of chicken (Rooster?) head on white 23 x 22 1/2 inch paper. Signed, number A/P.

Comment: Maybe Lee Altman, who was my student at the UW Art school in the 1970s, was repaying me for having him as a studio assisant for awhile when he was a student. He gave me a portfolio of his artworks. We'd work together on then-new litho processes--techniques I'd got a hold of on mimeographed sheets from the old Tamarind Lithography Workshop. That was before the famous lithography workshop published their book.


Specifications: 1976 print by Lee Altman. Intaglio. Black-ink on white rag paper, image of rooster head, 7 7/8 x 9 3/4 in. on a 15 x 16 sheet. Unmatted, unframed. Signed, numbered 4/10.

Comment: A few of my former students went to graduate school, and Lee Altman, who was my student at the UW Art school in the 1970s, went to Stanford University for his MFA. I think Lee found it hard to work at the UW on his prints. Maybe the atmosphere of my studio was more conducive to his work which, as you can see, is meticulously detailed and require long hours of undisturbed concentration.

Untitled - awaiting photo

Specifications: 1975 print by Lee Altman. Lithograph. Black-and-white crayon-manner image of three chickens, 21 x 29 3/4 in. on Japanese Etching natural colored paper. 24 3/4 x 35 3/4 in. Signed, number A/P.

Comment: In the 1970s Lee Altman was my student at the UW Art school. I don't remember whether I invited him or if he asked me, but he came to work in my studio as a kind of partner-assistant. We'd try difficult printmaking techniques such as a roll-up process that I wanted to use but which we couldn't do at the Art School because their materials weren't as good a mine at my studio.


Specifications: 1976 Print by Lee Altman. Intaglio. Black-ink on white rag paper, image of rooster held aloft by a hand. 9 3/4 x 7 1/2 in. on a 16 1/4 x 15 sheet. Unmatted, unframed. Signed, number 3/5.

Comment: Lee Altman was my student at the UW Art school in the 1970s. He was a most studious guy and he was one of the few that I let work in my studio on Halladay Street--the daylight basement level of our home.

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