Emergent Landscapes December 04 2016
Over the past couple of years we've had the pleasure of working with artist, writer, musician and cultural geographer Rob St. John on several projects. Rob and Tommy Perman contributed to our Random Spectacular No. 2 journal, discussing their Water of Life project and we've since collaborated on the Concrete Antenna 12" vinyl/print release and the Creative Edinburgh Awards shortlisted Score Tae The Toor book/CD.
Emergent Landscapes is a collaborative installation at Tate Modern Switch House, exploring the boundaries between art, geography and the Anthropocene. Between 9th-11th December 2016, Rob invites the public to participate in the creation of new visual and sonic sculptures that will continue to evolve beyond the Tate Exchange space.
From the layering of a soundscape echoing visitor contributions, reflections and perceptions to the collective construction of a cairn, piles of stones that historically act as markers of time and space, Emergent Landscapes will act as a beacon; marking the newly-built Switch House and re-situating its emergence within an ever-changing London landscape.
Once the installation period is over, the whole structure will then be transported to Hooke Park woodland in Dorset, where in collaboration with the Architectural Association and Common Ground charity, it will be made freely accessible to visitors and documented for years to come. Over months and years, the spores and seeds ‘painted’ onto the cairn materials will germinate and grow; to emerge, pattern and even destroy the structure created together.
On 10th December 2016 between 17.00 and 18.00 Rob will introduce the project with an artist's talk and on 11th December between 16.00 and 17.30 Rob will discuss the future of the project with writer, curator and artist Amy Cutler.
Find out more about the project and the free (but ticketed) talk and discussion.
The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden November 06 2016
Widely admired today as an illustrator and printmaker, Edward Bawden (1903-89) is hardly a ‘forgotten artist’. Yet one aspect of his career has been neglected until now: his role in the 1930s as a critically-acclaimed modern painter.
The Lost Watercolours of Edward Bawden sets the record straight by bringing together the largest collection of the artist’s pre-war watercolours ever assembled. Most were originally exhibited at one or other of Bawden’s major solo shows – at the Zwemmer Gallery in 1933 and the Leicester Galleries five years later – exhibitions that impressed critics and delighted collectors. Continues below...
It has taken three years to assemble this remarkable collection of pictures, many of which were, as the title of the book suggests, lost. The remarkable quest to find and identify Bawden’s pre-war watercolours is described by publisher Tim Mainstone in an amusing, informative essay, which forms the third part of this richly illustrated volume. James Russell, author of the popular series ‘Ravilious in Pictures’, contributes an introductory essay exploring Bawden’s life and career in the 1930s.
The watercolours themselves are grouped by exhibition, with additional sections of works from the mid-30s and from the decade’s end.
Camera Ready 1983 October 25 2016
Matthew Rich, Master Printer at Jealous has just created Camera Ready 1983, a new nine colour screen print which painstakingly recreates a piece of rediscovered artwork from Matthew's time printing fly posters in Manchester for Factory Records and their Haçienda club. Matthew explains...
"I started screen printing in the early nineteen eighties at a Manchester print shop called Community Expression. I printed posters, stickers and t-shirts for local bands and clubs, political groups and the students' union. Our first premises was in a university building on Oxford Road and then I can remember 3 or 4 more places before we moved to a bigger shop called Lola Publicity on Claremont Road in Moss Side.
I joined forces with the Manchester fly posting crew so as well as being poster printers for the Manchester music scene, we would pick up record company posters sent from London to the Piccadilly station Red Star depot. We would (not entirely legally) paste them all over town, sometimes travelling as far afield as Sheffield and Leeds. Continues below...
We had a good relationship with local promoter Alan Wise, making posters for his acts the Fall, The Blue Orchids and Nico for the brief time she lived and worked in Manchester. But most of our work came from Factory Records, firstly making fly posters for the original Factory club (AKA the Russell or PSV Club) in Hulme and then, from 1982 onwards, gig posters for the brand new Fac 51, The Haçienda.
Arriving at the club with a roll of freshly screen printed posters guaranteed free entry, strolling smugly past the queues and some cash in hand to spend at the bar. There were many memorable nights like Einsturzende Neubauten attacking the pillars holding up the roof with a jack hammer, Madonna's first ever show in the UK and William Burroughs on stage reading from his new book, 'The Place of Dead Roads'. Continues below...
Back in the printshop we set out the poster artwork with Letraset, Rubylith and Rotring pens. Shot negatives onto Lith film using a huge horizontal process camera - all brass hinges and ground glass screens - and hand printed onto MG poster paper with very smelly old solvent based inks. No health and safety back in the eighties!
Many many years later I found this bit of poster artwork in a box in the attic. So many people of a certain age remember that era of the Manchester music scene with such fondness and a few suggested I do something with my bits and pieces of memorabilia. Continues below...
I scanned the ancient artwork and dissected it layer by layer. The ageing off-white card of the artwork sheet. The palest blue lines (invisible to the camera) of the layout grid, some scribbled notes in pencil, a bit of Tippex covering a mistake and the matt black of the Letraset itself. We definitely ran out of letter Ys but that's fine, make a negative and print off as many new ones as you need.
There's a story here of my journey in screen printing from knocking out one colour posters on the cheapest stock to this nine colour, limited edition print in expensive Swiss water based inks on 100% cotton mould-made Somerset paper."
Albion – A Celebration of Britain in Print September 05 2016
We’re delighted to be returning to The Town House on Fournier Street in the heart of Spitalfields for an event co-curated with The Town House proprietor Fiona Atkins.
The building dates from 1720 where silk weavers originally worked and plied their trade.
In addition to a showcase of our artist-designed fabrics and wallpapers we’ll be presenting an exhibition entitled ‘Albion - A Celebration of Britain In Print’ featuring limited edition prints by St Jude’s co-founder Angie Lewin and printmaker Christopher Brown.
Christopher Brown was born in London in 1953. He attended the Royal College of Art where he was introduced to, and eventually assisted, Edward Bawden, the master of the linocut. It was Bawden who encouraged him to explore this medium.
Since then, Christopher has exhibited at the Michael Parkin Gallery, The Royal Academy, The Fry Gallery, The Fine Art Society and the Victoria & Albert Museum.
‘Monkeys and Birds’ was designed in 1958 by printmaker Sheila Robinson (1925-1988) and was printed by hand to decorate the walls of Cage Cottage, the family home in Great Bardfield. The design originates from Sheila’s hand cut linocut blocks.
A chapter profiling Sheila's work features in 'Bawden, Ravilious and the Artists of Great Bardfield' published by the V&A.
As well as the original colour way, we've worked closely with Sheila’s daughter, the printmaker and painter Chloë Cheese, to create two additional colour ways.
Visit us at The Town House, 5 Fournier Street, London E1 6QE from Tuesday 20th until Sunday 25th September. Open Tuesday 11am-8pm, Wednesday-Friday 11am-6pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am-5pm.
Christopher Brown's 'Albion' linocut
Christopher Brown cutting his 'Albion' linocut
Angie Lewin's 'Sea Pinks' wood engraving
Mark Hearld's 'Squirrel and Sunflower' fabric
Sheila Robinson's 'Monkeys and Birds' wallpaper
Kenema June 28 2016
Edinburgh based photograph Peter Dibdin has been visiting and working in Sierra Leone since 2014, photographing a development project by Orkidstudio who were building a new school for underprivileged girls run by Swawou School Foundation.
The resulting images of the community involved in the build, from the students to the construction team, will be published in a beautiful hardback book featuring 72 photographs, interviews and essays.
Swawou School student Aminata Sheriff at home
Brick layer Lahai Samai Ngabulango on site in 2014
Teacher Dauda Kabba at the site of the new school
Labourer Moina Kallon digging a 15 ft deep cess pit
Score Tae The Toor May 22 2016
Many thanks to everyone who joined us at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop yesterday for the launch of Score Tae The Toor, a handmade book and remix CD inspired by the Concrete Antenna sound installation at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop created by Simon Kirby, Tommy Perman and Rob St John and developed from our previous Concrete Antenna 12" vinyl/print package.
The trio gave a set of musicians access to their sound archive, tower instruments and compositions, and asked them to re-imagine the sited material created for the installation. Seven writers were asked to write pieces inspired by the tower and the installation, with pieces covering architecture, memory, archives, urban ecology and public art, written as essays, poetry and morse code.
Named after a phrase used by fishermen in the Firth of Forth using tall buildings on the Edinburgh skyline to orientate their sailing, Score Tae The Toor is a limited edition publication printed using a variety of techniques including risography, lithography, letterpress and computer controlled pen and knife plotters. Each cover features a unique numbered frame from an animation created by Tommy Perman.
Interrobang May 09 2016
Interrobang: an international showcase of letterpress print forms part of Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft's The Village of Type programme.
Selected by a panel of typographers and designers, this open submission exhibition forms part of Ditchling’s popular Artists’ Open House trail and takes place in the beautiful former studios of painter Sir Frank Brangwyn. The exhibition features the work of contemporary letterpress artists from as far afield as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, The Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the USA.
We're delighted to have been involved in this project and have produced a Random Spectacular journal dedicated to the event.
The diversity of the exhibition is reflected with an example of work by each of the contributing artists alongside additional articles that take a look at the idiosyncratic approach to typography of Ditchling's printing press St Dominic's. We also talk to Alan Kitching about his work and inspirations and find out more about the activities of the Occasional Print Club, whilst The Counter Press look at the role and relevance of the recent revival in letterpress and Anthony Burrill takes us on a tour of a printing works in a hidden corner of Rye. Take a look inside Interrobang.
The exhibition continues at Jointure Studios (just down the road from Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft) until 30th May 2016. Find out more.
Dynamo Works 'House'
The Print Project 'Shapednoise / Blood Music / Joanne / Boe&Lx poster for Golden Cabinet'
Dafi Kühne 'Januarloch'
Geri McCormick 'Viva'
The front cover of our Random Spectacular journal, featuring an interrobang printed by Thomas Mayo.
Our feature on the work of Alan Kitching Find out more.
Our look at the idiosyncratic approach to typography of Ditchling's printing press St Dominic's Find out more.
BE / ONE February 20 2016
I've been meaning to post something about our friends at Caught By The River's latest audio release on their Rivertones label for a few days. What's been delaying my post is thinking about a way of explaining just how good it is.
I'm still trying to work that out, but as it seems to be (justifiably) selling extremely quickly (the first vinyl edition has sold out) I wanted to get this posted before it sells out completely.
It's the first long player on the Rivertones label and is the soundtrack to Wolfgang Buttress' award winning pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo. The Hive is an immersive, multi-sensory experience inspired by groundbreaking UK scientific research into the health of bees and the audio release is a hypnotic conceptualisation of their life, work and living environment. The musicians involved in the project improvised in the key of C, playing along to a live feed of sounds from the a beehive.
A series of live performances are underway. Luke Turner has just reviewed the Nottingham debut of the Be collective's performance...
"It’s a genuinely immersive experience, as cosy as if we are in the hive itself. Indeed, there’s an old-fashioned wicker hive on stage, just in front of the keyboards. Although bees communicate by vibration, amplified recordings of their activities are audible to the human ear, and the sound of tooting queens and their subjects’ waggle-dancing hums in and out of droning melodica, Tibetan singing bowls, accordion, cello, guitar and occasional vocals." Read in full
There's not much more than I say other than do what you can to get a copy of the CD or vinyl release before it's too late.
This summer the installation will come to Kew Gardens. Find out more
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