Five Printmakers offer Chichester exhibition

Five Printmakers: A Vibrant Exhibition of Fine Art Prints is the exhibition at Chichester’s Oxmarket running from May 11-23

Saturday, 15th May 2021, 7:05 am
Work by Mai Osawa
Work by Mai Osawa

Taking part are David Crosby, Stephanie Draper, Ros Pritchard, Mai Osawa and Liz Varrall.

As Mai explains: “We are a group of creative printmakers from London and the south-east who are united by a love of print and connection to Ochre Print Studios in Guildford, Surrey.We planned this exhibition before this pandemic and were forced to postpone it so it will be really exciting to see this work together for the first time, especially in the newly refurbished Oxmarket Gallery.

“The exhibition brings together a range of printing techniques and sources of inspiration creating an impactful mix of literal and abstract; colour and black and white. The members of the group use linocut, etching, screen printing and collagraph and are inspired by nature, history, architecture, literature and social change. This exhibition is an accessible and affordable way to access original art. There will be something for everyone and all prints and cards are for sale. We have a wide range of experience between us and produce a broad spectrum of work.

“David Crosby’s linocuts draw on myths and silent film to create simple, but singular images in monochrome and colour. Stephanie Draper’s etchings are inspired by wild landscapes and the maps we use to depict them. Ros Pritchard is also stirred by nature, capturing the beauty of flowers and gardens around her in evocative linocuts.”

With her own etchings, Mai promises to bring a sensitive combination of light and dimension to the historic buildings she is fascinated by.

Liz Varrall is also inspired by architecture and maps, translating them into dynamic, colourful abstract screenprints.

“We have enjoyed collaborating on this project and hope that our love of print is evident in the exhibition.”

Mai added: “Trained as a set designer, I have always been fascinated by the old stone buildings of Europe and I have long wanted to understand what it must have been like to be a mason or an architect back then. I have found that the physical process of etching is almost as much of a challenge for a printmaker as is the challenge a mason faces when striving to achieve a perfect building or carving.

“The most important aspects for me are light and dimensions, and I hope that these can help the viewer project their own stories and imagination onto the work.”

Ros added: “After working in education, I have finally made the move to full-time printmaking. I take my inspiration from the natural world: its textures, patterns, colours and forms. My aim is not to imitate nature, but to imbue my work with the essence of all that is joyous in it.

“My love of long walks and gardening gives me ample opportunity to sketch and photograph the world around me. Regular visits to the Pembrokeshire coast, with its incredible light, supply the inspiration for seascapes and coastal prints.

“I work mainly with lino cuts; both reduction and multi-plate prints. There is something hypnotic and meditative in the carving process which contrasts with the detailed planning and the blending of inks that go into creating a print.”