Imprint, our annual high school student printmaking exhibition, has been a cornerstone program for the Wharton Esherick Museum for a decade. Nearly a century ago, Wharton Esherick found his true calling through printmaking; Imprint encourages young people to explore this art form and make artistic statements through it for generations to come. We currently invite art classes from the Chester, Bucks, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks, Lehigh, and Philadelphia Counties to enter each year. Our aim for this program is to inspire new generations of young artists through Esherick’s prints and legacy.

2024 THEME: Rhythms

Much of Esherick’s creative practice was shaped by the actors and dancers who surrounded him. He consistently found a way to incorporate that graceful movement into his work, from the Rhythms (1922) woodcut print to his Spiral Library Ladder (1969), and beyond! You can more about Esherick’s adventures at the Gardner Doing Dance Camp in our blog post, Early Rhythms: Wharton Esherick and the Gardner Doing Dance Camp

Looking for more of a challenge? Perhaps, rather than considering this theme literally, you might also think about applying it in other, less conventional ways such as the natural rhythms of life and the patterns in which we all exist. We are eager to see you get creative and, most importantly, have fun!

Rhythms, Wharton Esherick, 1922.


The jury will select pieces for an online exhibition at the Wharton Esherick Museum, opening on Saturday, April 6, 2024. We are excited to be joined this year by guest jurors and local printmaking artists, Katie Garth and Nikki Gilliam.


The competition is open to high schools in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks, Lehigh, and Philadelphia Counties. Public, private, charter, and home schools may enter. All submissions must be printed or include printed components. They may be woodblock, linoleum, soft or E-Z cut, but don’t have to be! We are eager to see you get creative with your printmaking!


February 16, 2024  *Extended to Wednesday, February 21, 2024


The works will be judged by a jury composed of museum staff and professional artists and/or art teachers. The jury will select First, Second, and Third Place winners, who will receive a cash prize as will their art departments. A Viewer’s Choice Award will be voted on through our Facebook page. While there is no cash prize for Viewer’s Choice, the print may already be one chosen by the judges or be voted into the show through the public’s participation.

Criteria for selection are creativity and craftsmanship. Prints this year should interpret the theme ‘Rhythms.’

Finalists’ teachers will be notified via email by March 15, 2024 of the jury’s decisions.

A virtual opening reception will be held on Sunday, April 14, 2024 at 2:00 pm.


There are four awards given to selected students. They are: First Place, Second Place, Third Place, and Viewer’s Choice. An Honorable Mention may also be awarded at the jury’s discretion. First, Second and Third Place come with monetary prizes of $200, $150, and $100 which are given to the student as well as the art department of their respective school. First-place winners will also receive a free field trip to the Wharton Esherick Museum for a class of up to 16 people. For larger groups, we are proud to offer a free virtual program.

The Lunchroom, Bella Meltzer, Abington Senior High School, 1st place winner Imprint 2023

Looking to bring printmaking into your classroom?

Check out our Making an Imprint Unit Plan for high school students.

Take your students through the full five-lesson unit, covering history, criticism, and practice, or simply pick and choose those activities that best suit your needs!

We also created a companion plan, Fellow Citizen: Digital Citizenship and the Printmaker, to help guide students through the ins and outs of copyright law, ethics, and fair use in the digital landscape.

Entry Guidelines

  1. All submissions must be printed or include printed components. They may be woodblock, linoleum, soft or E-Z cut, but don’t have to be! We are eager to see you get creative with your printmaking! Don’t forget to tell us what you made under “Medium and Materials” on the entry form.  If you use additional materials or specific types of paper for your print, please note that as well. 
  1. All submissions must interpret the central theme, Rhythms. 
  1. Only one print may be submitted per student. Each school may submit no more than fifteen entries. 
  1. Photographs should be JPEG or TIFF files, at 300 dpi. Only the work should be visible in each photo. 
  1. Artwork should have a title – be creative! 
  1. Deadline for entries is 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, February 21, 2024. 
  1. All entries should be submitted online, using this entry form. Please be advised that submission of this form constitutes permission given to the Wharton Esherick Museum to exhibit work online and use it in publicity material for the Imprint Competition/Exhibition.

Have questions or need more information? Please email [email protected] or give us a call at 610-644-5822.