Amy N. Worthen

Amy Namowitz Worthen is an artist, teacher, print historian, and curator. She was born in 1946 in the Bronx, NY and was an art major at the High School of Music and Art, NY. She studied printmaking with Leonard Baskin at Smith College, where she earned a BA degree in Art in 1967. In 1966 she received a Stoeckel Fellowship to study etching at the Yale University Summer School of Art, Norfolk, CT. 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. Worthen has been based in Des Moines, Iowa since 1970, but she has also spent many years living abroad. In 1989, she was a visiting artist at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica di Venezia. Repeated visits to the school eventually led to the purchase of a home in Venice, and for several years she has divided her time between Venice and Des Moines. Worthen’s primary studio focus has been on the creation of highly detailed architectural engravings. She is perhaps best known for her Capitol and Terrace Hill series, which are playful recreations of local Des Moines landmarks. Worthen has had forty-three solo exhibitions in the US and abroad and 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 served as a guest curator for several exhibitions in the US and abroad. She is a specialist in the history and techniques of engraving and has written numerous catalogs and articles. She has also 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. There is one work by Worthen in the Luther College Fine Arts Collection, a 1982 engraving titled Tayra Cage.
Source of Biography; Amy Worthen Prints and Drawings, 1960-1990. Grinnell, IA: Grinnell College, 1990; Lifework: Portraits of Iowa Women Artists. Bettendorf, IA: Lifework Arts Press, 1998; Who’s Who in American Art. New Providence, NJ: Marquis Who’s Who, 2010