i. I stumbled upon a book of woodcuts by Phillip Sutton during a spare hour in the library. Sutton's woodcuts are either made directly from life (in extreme black and white) or by cutting up the woodblock and rolling and inking each piece separately in strong saturated colour. I want to have a similarly playful and joyful approach to making art - worth considering if I continue with the woodcut.
ii. I attended a talk by Michelle Avison. Michelle is a practicing artist, head of the printmaking department at Morley College and founded Slaughterhaus Print Studio. Michelle talked about her own practice of repeatedly looking at, and working from, the same landscape. She used several phrases to describe her work and practice that had a lot of resonance with my own (see notes below).
iii. This week we had another fantastic lecture by Paul Coldwell. He described how in painting the canvas immediately bears the gesture/mark of the painter, but in printmaking there is always an intermediary which we call 'the matrix' (often, but not exclusively, a printing plate). Coincidentally, Paul focused most of the talk on the woodcut. We were shown artists such as Tony Bevan who wrestles with the physical roughness of found wood, Munch who would cut his woodblocks into several pieces to print several colours at once, or Thomas Kilpper who creates unique site-specific woodcuts from the floors of entire buildings. Paul urged us to consider the matrix as we explore various processes at the beginning of this MA. Finding creative and experimental means of exploring the matrix is definitely an exciting challenge.
iv. I went to see the spectacular War on Drugs at Alexandra Palace. Aside from the lush, expansive sound created by the band, Adam Granduciel's lyrics are poetic and earnest: 'I resist what I cannot change / And I wanna find what can’t be found.' In an interview in August he described the songs as being 'about trying to figure out my relationship to growing up… I guess it's trying to figure out where my story is in this big thing.’
v. I was interviewed by photographer Ant Prothero for his MA project. Ant is my girlfriend's stepbrother and a good friend. Ant explores familial relationships and memory through his practice, a theme that occurs in my own work. A possible small group show for much later in the year was discussed.