leopard spots in mottled shade

September 11, 2013

During the summer I was able to observe at close quarters a leopard sleeping in a magnolia tree. It was a lazy hot afternoon and as I stretched out on a nearby bench the leopard shifted around the low slung branches mottled by the shade of the magnolia. People came and went unaware that a creature was at repose above them as they ate their packed lunches and had their mobile communications, even when they saw me observing the tree.

leopard lying in a tree

The leopard, in turn, observed me.

GemmaJohn

What an amazing leopard you say, to be able to lie in a tree, hold a sketchbook and also draw at the same time…yes amazing indeed and most dedicated to their art. This leopard is so dedicated to art that they plan to lie in the tree for a whole 12 months, probably give or take a week or twos worth of roaming fields and stretching. For this leopard has a 12 month residency at Didsbury Parsonage Gardens and it is such a lovely tree. You can find out more and track their situation here.

Also at Didsbury Parsonage in September, an exhibition from two talented friends. Come see!

Inline images 1

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If Not Here Where

June 27, 2013

sugarlift 002

I’ve been etching a new plate at Hot Bed Press the last week or so.  I always forget how long the process can take if you don’t want to rush things, especially with sugar-lift. However, despite the sighs and winsome looks outside, I did have fun splashing it on to the plate and a few cups of tea later was rewarded with this beautiful crystallisation as the the sugar dried on the hot bed, see details below.

sugarlift 007

sugarlift 013

The plate is being made in preparation for an exhibition that starts next weekend, 7th July, at Didsbury Parsonage. See below for flyer and click here for more details.

flyer_portrait

a blustery bluecoat morning

February 4, 2013

Last week I took the train to Liverpool on a bitter cold windy morning, it was great to walk round the city for an hour or two, pushing against the wind and looking up just in time to see some great architectural detail, so many good buildings and sites to see. I didn’t take my camera so you will just have to imagine the cobbled streets full of sailors and goods coming off the boats, well they were there at some point in time, I’m sure that I saw them.

I went to the Bluecoat Arts Centre to see the Hayward Touring exhibition of prints by the wonder that is William Kentridge. I’ve enjoyed his work for some time now, having poured over my copy of Supercontemporanea:William Kentridge I’d  only seen a couple of his brilliant animations in the flesh so I was a bit taken aback by the 4 rooms full of his incisive prints. Some prints were made in collaboration with other printmakers and many were editioned by others, but there is no escaping that the drawing belongs to Kentridge. Most of the work is black and white, often including collaged papers, domestic objects, text. The physicality of the human body is evident not only in depiction but from the torn scraps of paper, smudged lines,layers of ink and fingerprints in the etched plates that describe moving flesh. Politics, human frailty and  transience are all brought together into a theatre of images. He does make good images.

walldrawingbg

This, of course is not one of them, but something I did years ago around the time I first saw his work – 7 FRAGMENTS FOR GEORGES MÉLIÈS . I made a drawing of myself dive into the dappled light.

Shutter

November 15, 2012

 

Shutter will be showing this weekend in The Div/sion of Power

final-poster

More info at http://iotart.wordpress.com

Talking about the prints I realised the influence on them of the illustrations from my favourite book from childhood, ok,it’s still one of my favourite books. The Children of Green Knowe by Lucy Boston. Her son Peter illustrated the book with drawings and scraperboard images. They are so much more wonderful and detailed than my work, but I hope that the feeling shares something similar.

Shuttered

November 15, 2012

Over the last few weeks I’ve been making a new piece of work in response to Didsbury Parsonage for an exhibition starting this weekend. I’ve always loved this place so was really pleased to get involved. Here are some photos from the Parsonage, its gardens, the work in progress and the work finished, for now.

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Places and Perspectives

September 12, 2012

From tomorrow evening I will be showing prints and books in an exhibition at The Gallery at  St.Georges House, Bolton. Click on the link below for more details.

Places and Perspectives Exhibition

-in between- in Glasgow

April 23, 2012

I’m going to be showing work at the Glasgow Artists Book Fair this weekend (28th and 29th April). Most of the books on my website will be there for perusal and purchase including the ‘proper’ half of the -in between- edition, on sale for a princely £4.50 each. I’m really looking forward to having a mooch about Glasgow again, I might drop the last few misfits whilst I mooch.

International Print Bienale

December 12, 2011

Marta Lech: 10.10, linocut 62x90cm

In November I got a lift to Newcastle which turned out to be a lovely city as I discovered walking all over it to visit the International Print Biennale. First stop, the most welcoming Northern Print workshops who co-ordinated the bienale, made me a cup of tea and showed me around.  A very blustery and invigorating walk along the river for a  quick trip to the ‘closed due to electric fault’ Baltic  and back over the river to the Laing, Newcastle and Northumberland University exhibitions too. My favourite were  Marta Lech‘s  large linocuts  of lightplay, beautifully cut if unfortunately set behind wobbly crap flexi-plastic. Other highlights were  Lauren Dreschers etching and wax tattoed figures , Michael Donnelly’s one-plate-9-images-clever-inking, Katsutoshi Yuasa’s massive woodcut shipwrecks, Jessica Harrisons’ Blarney Stone and Elizabeth Boasts’ larger than life consequences woodcuts. Bit of a theme there I’m afraid. Alongside all the rest which was good too, including the Chapman Brothers and Mervyn Peake retrospective (not technically in the biennale but worth mentioning all the same).  Apart from being a wide ranging print show, the biennale is a good introduction to Newcastle. I loved the scale of Newcastle’s buildings  it’s great big bridges and it’s almost-sea air, I hope to get back there soon.