!!to be further elaborated as I finalise Assignments 4 and 5
Francis Bacon’s edgy, visceral paintings tapping the unconscious a key source of inspiration for:
Quotations from the videos below:
We do with our lives what we can. And then we die. What else is there?
If anything ever does work in my case chance, and what I call ‘accident’ takes over.
Gamble everything on the next brush stroke…different strokes trying to do something else then develop themselves
How are you going to trap reality? How are you going to trap an appearance without making an illustration of it?
- Colour of meat is beautiful
Issues for my printmaking:
Tate Gallery Retrospective with words from Francis Bacon spoken by John Hurt
BBC Archive film
His last interview
Works set to music
Jenny Saville’s extremely tactile approach to painting women’s bodies, including her own, as a feminist critique of the way the female nude has been portrayed by the male art establishment has influenced my work in:
Assignment 2: The Human Condition 2: Flesh Here my focus is on the tactility of the body and ways in which different types of paper eg wrinkled blotting paper or tracing paper give different body textures. As well as meanings of different shapes.
Assignment 4: Abstract Self-Portrait (forthcoming)
Assignment 5: Memory? (forthcoming influenced by Aleppo)
“The way to change peoples’ attitudes is just to do it.”
“The struggle is part of making things work”
“Try to create a balance of being unbalanced”
References and resources
Gray, J., L. Nochlin, D. Sylvester and S. Schama (2005?). Jenny Saville. New York, Rizzoli.
Jenny Saville discussing her painting process in 2018 in relation to the All Too Human exhibition at Tate Britain. This is a detailed discussion of her working process and evolution as an artist. She is interested in:
Earlier interview with Jenny Saville, focussing particularly on her recent work with its interest in time and traces, multiple figures and memory.
in exhibition ‘All Too Human’ pieta of people carrying bodies out from war zones. she used lots of photographs of a woman in burqa and lots of bodies.
“I have been working on Pietas [depictions of the Virgin Mary holding the dead body of Christ] quite a bit, and a series of children being carried.
“Over 20 years I have collecting images of babies being carried out of bombings, war situations, in Pieta poses knowing that one day I will do a piece, so this work has been a long time in the making.
“Aleppo is the first one I have released like it.
“I have done paintings linked to war before, but not linked to a political situation – I have endless images from the internet, or from newspapers, of babies that have been killed in these bombings, and when I finished the piece, I have two children myself, how long will it be before we as humans know not to do this?
“When I was titling it, I thought I would link it – for the first time – to what is going on in Syria.
Australian printmaker. Combines drawing, photography and lithography
Carborundum printmaking is a collagraph printmaking technique in which the image is created by adding light passages to a dark field. It is a relatively new process invented in the US during the 1930s that allows artists to work on a large scale. Carborundum was originally used by printmakers to grind down lithography stones and is now used in collagraph prints to create gradients of tone and a sandy texture. It works because when the carborundum adheres to the plate the ink sits around it.The grit is available in several grades – fine, medium and coarse – each giving different effects.
Normally, cardboard or wood plates are coated in a layer of carborundum or screen, and the lights are created by filling in the texture with screen filler or glue.
It can be applied in a number of different ways:
Carborundum prints may be printed as intaglio plates. To print a carborundum print, the surface is covered in ink, and then the surface is wiped clean with tarlatan cloth or newspaper, leaving ink only in the texture of the screen or carborundum. A damp piece of paper is placed on top, and the plate and paper are run through a printing press that, through pressure, transfers the ink from the recesses of the plate to the paper.
Very large editions are not possible as a small amount of carborundum comes off every time it is wiped down.
Printmakers using carborundum techniques:
Iona Howard uses poly-urethane varnish as a binder on perspex plates. Combined with monoprint.
O’Donoghue was born in England but lived and worked for many years in County Kerry, Ireland. He graduated from Goldsmiths in 1982 and was Artist in Residence at the National Gallery, London from 1984-85.
His work is characterised by an engagement with the past. He uses figuration and abstraction to explore themes of human identity, memory, remembering and experience; and draws on history, mythology and personal records to create works which resonate with emotional intensity.
His printmaking includes very large carborundum plates of figures. He mixes fine grain carborundum, acrylic paste and black acrylic paint. He paints this on the plate with a thick brush, wiping off and reworking the image on the plate before it dries. This makes a complex, multi-layered texture. He often uses aluminium plates. Prints on thick Arches paper.
Hughie O’Donoghue installation at IMMA 2009
The Measure of All Things Introduction
‘Artists never completely control the meaning of their work’
The Measure of all Things Westminster Abbey 2014
Rolf (Emil Rudolf) Nesch (1893 – 1975) was an expressionist artist, especially noted for his printmaking – ‘material pictures’. He is one of the first artists to have consciously used collage to create collagraph printing plates.
Rolf Nesch tribute
Nesch was born in Esslingen am Neckar, and studied at the academy in Dresden from 1912 to 1914. He then participated in World War I, but was taken prisoner by the British. In 1929 he settled in Hamburg to continue his painting career, influenced by expressionism in general, especially Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and Edvard Munch. Upon the Nazi takeover in Germany in 1933, Nesch repatriated to Norway.
Inspired by Norwegian scenery and working life, he gave up painting and produced the following year his first so-called material picture, and also took up sculpture. Drawing continued to be a key means of expression. But it is as printmaker that Rolf Nesch made his most significant contribution. As a technical innovator he discovered the potential in new materials – using metal and found objects as the basis for collagraphs. He gave depth and texture to prints by soldering out metal shapes and wire to metal printing plates. He then took this further by drilling holes in plates and sewing to the base plate. The prints were so deep he needed 8 blankets to get the right pressure and very heavy strong paper.Many of his images are narrative with bold use of cutout figures.
Nesch died in 1975 in Oslo. The Nesch Museum opened in 1993 in Ål, where he had lived for twenty-five years, to commemorate his hundredth anniversary.
Richard Bosman (B 1944) is an Australian artist and printmaker who has produced woodcuts and linocuts since 1980s.
Many of his paintings and prints are concerned with tragedies in dark urban settings, on rough seas, and in eerily quiet woods. They have been influenced by expressionist printmakers like Edvard Munch and Emil Nolde. Also Japanese printmakers like Hokusai.
Some of his work is very experimental. He printed Smokers (1982) with his wife in an edition of two rolls of paper towels.
Born in India, raised in Australia, and the son of a merchant sea captain, Bosman has repeatedly returned to the setting of the sea. In an exhibition “Death and the Sea” at Owen James Gallery he depicts different aspects of the South Pacific sea: volcanoes, moonlit voyages and farewells, small rowboats fighting gigantic waves – “mankind is fickle, life is fleeting, and that the ocean remains unconcerned with our plight”.
“There is a cinematic beauty to these works by Bosman. We sometimes feel as though we are looking at a film strip stopped in time, somewhere between cause and horrible effect. Works such as Volcano and Fog Bank are subtle in their ability to show the progress of time, but there are visual gaps in it, and it is in these gaps that much of the intrigue lies. In Night Sky the effect is almost imperceptible. Here, only the stars move, and in this movement we find we are disoriented. Both South Seas Kiss and Mutiny share the short-lived joy of shore-leave, as a captain is first enraptured by an island girl only to meet his demise once he turns his back.”