I'm just catching the last gulp of coffee and squit of wifi before doing the talk at Gansborough's House. I'm printmaker of the month, no less, and have a small show hung by Emma Buckmaster and Janet French. I'm thrilled to be playmate of the month and am especially looking forward to the talk tonight, which will be with a well informed group of printmakers and friends of GH. I'm hoping for a debate about where printmakers belong inbetween the credit crunching rock and the hard place of a largely dysfunctional art market. I love my job but we need to be honest about how to earn a living doing it.
It's always the marks that draw me back into printmaking - the sharp lines of engraving or the softer painterly marks of litho or monoprints. My hope is to explore some questions about editioning and how it fits with a printmakers working life. I've always felt that drawing and painting are like making music. Printmakers, just like musicians, now have to work within digital media that can be instantly copied. A well made archival print is literally a mouse click away, for everybody. I'm hoping we can talk about how this feels for makers and buyers of work.
I'm not a great believer in artists statements, so here's a quote from an interview I did for ICR Ipswich radio during my recent show at Colchester Minories, which was called "Such Stuff" : "Most of my role models are not from visual arts, but from music and performance ... Jazz gave everybody a working method that is still fit for purpose 100 years on. These musicians were born as captives, their history and memory stolen. Out of that necessity they made the virtue of improvisation, of speaking to the moment, of not staying in one place for long. As a jobbing artist, that was a gift that liberated me from this obsession with objects, or rather with the markets for those objects. There is so much stuff, so many opinions. Where do you start to look, let alone to make ? "
This is quite a long artist statement for me.
I always think that artist's opinions are best seen and not heard.
Everybody needs a plan and here's my one for the talk tonight :