Glossary: How and Why Artists Make Prints

One word to describe the new exhibition held at the Crescent Arts, Scarborough is… Detail.

Being unfamiliar with the ways of artists, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect but walking around the small studio, it was clear that each image was expertly crafted together.

Glossary: How and Why Artists Make Prints brings together the work of seven contemporary printmakers including Julian Meredith, Rachel Clewlow and Stephen Chambers.

It consisted of different examples of prints that varied from monoprint through to potato print (which was a favourite of mine).

With other works including digital print and direct print, the exhibition has something for any fan of art.

Julian Meredith’s Swifts (The Scream) evokes a sense of flight and movement and upon researching, I found that Meredith pressed a dead bird into the paper.

Originally shocked by this concept, the image did, as the information said, evoked a question of how we value other creatures’ lives.

A particular favourite of mine was Hilary Paynter’s Spetchells – Gathering Places.

The amount of detail that Hilary put into the image was a true eye-opener and an inspiration.

To create something so time consuming, creative and skilful is something, I would imagine, aspiring print makers would envy.

Being one of the small number of artists and illustrators working in the UK using the wood-engraving process, Hilary exceeds all expectations.

Her image is clearly and undoubtedly inspired by the Northumbrian artist Thomas Bewick (1753-1828) who raised wood engraving to an art form.

It is an exhibition showcasing the skills of each of the different print makers and showing just how many different ways to print.

As a novice art-gallery goer, I was astounded by the amount of work and skills that each artist has, including the simplistic yet profound potato print.

Art exhibitions, for those not ‘in with the crowd’, initially bring the question of ‘I don’t get it?’ to mind.

However, with plenty of information and a video of each artist, it did show how and why artists make prints.

Despite enjoying the exhibition, it did seem more catered towards those with an interest in fine art and those with an expertise in the area.

The exhibition is curated by Northern Print, based in Newcastle upon Tyne and will be available for viewing until May 16.


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