Print exhibition – 50 Years of inky Fingers

Over the last couple of months I have been involved in several different exhibitions – often they are neatly spread out throughout the year but not this time. The Annual Miniature Art Awards is held this time every year (except last year for the reasons we all know about) and is on now. My next post will probably show the work I have in that.

The other exhibition that is running concurrently is called ’50 Years of Inky Fingers’ and is a celebration of the Print Circle, a group of women printmakers which was started in 1970. Again, this exhibition should have been held last year, but was postponed to this. For this exhibition we gathered work from early members to show alongside work from present members, all of which was to be work created during the time the artists were members of the group, as a retrospective. We still have two founding members actively participating, and several more from the seventies and eighties. The exhibition is large, with over 100 artworks, and over 40 artists participating. My part involved tracking down ex-members to invite them to participate, and required a fair bit of detective work, but in the end the number who were eventually found was very satisfying. There will be a second exhibition later in the year which will have work from the founding members alongside brand new work from present members, so will look both back and forwards.

The print works I have created during the six years I have been a member of the Print Circle have all been what I call assemblages – three dimensional artworks built from prints. In general, these are all monoprints or monotypes. (A monoprint is a one-off print created using a prepared plate but inked or treated in a way that is different from any prints made as part of an edition and a monotype is an image created on a glass or acrylic plate that is unique and cannot be repeated in any way. For more information and examples go to here or here.) You can see in the images below that some have been created using etching or drypoint plates, others have included stencils and objects such as string or raffia to create masks and offset images. All of them have multiple layers.

The final three dimensional objects are created quite slowly, ideas come to me of how I might use a certain set of prints and then I set about folding, cutting and arranging the pieces. Rhythm and Variation (at the front of the first picture) was made in response to a themed exhibition called Music Box. My aim was to create an imaginary musical instrument, and this was the result.

Author: anna warren portfolio

I draw, I paint, I am a printmaker. Always searching for the interesting detail in the world around me.

6 thoughts

  1. I can see some framed prints on the walls in the distance. I am wondering if you are the only member who is exhibiting 3D pieces.
    Each of your pieces is a body. Who would think of printmaking being part of body-building? Surely only you.
    I am intrigued with the fantastical musical instrument. It could also be a dance form – as – if you wrapped it right around it becomes a kind of tutu or even a version of a Hawiian grass skirt. How beautifully displayed it is with Herbarium. I have been peering into Herbarium to see if the leafy contents are actual dried specimens or objects made from paper.
    You take paper to a level that most of us wouldn’t think of doing (certainly not myself), not only printing on it but fashioning it into a whole new creation of forms.

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  2. At first I was the only member displaying 3D works, but then another artist was asked to put some in too. Hers are simpler – boxes and bag shapes. I hadn’t thought of these as being a body but you are right – a form in three dimensions! They are real sprigs of leaves in Herbarium – I change them regularly. Its interesting to see what works and what doesn’t. I paid a visit to my local park to find as much variety as possible for this show, and most of the twigs didn’t work. These ones have dried quite nicely!

    Rhythm and Variation – the musical instrument – has taken on numerous different forms, and I have displayed it differently too. Sometimes it sits at 90 degrees to the way it is now, on the curved section, with the leaves rising up. I also had it hanging from strings at one point. I like the idea it can suggest different interpretations!

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