Today myself and Alex Hirtzel (freelance artist) and Sobia Khan (Arts Educator) visited Oliver Thomas Nursery School and Elmhurst Primary School to work with their Newham Family Learning Groups and delivered creative Lino printing workshops on the themes of ‘Treasures’.
This theme was inspired by all the exotic and beautiful treasures that the Dutch East India Company brought to the Dutch Republic. We hope that project participants will be able to respond to this theme by thinking about their own personal treasures. It was also inspired by Jan Jansz de Heem’s Still life with a Monkey
This ambitious composition is one of the finest works attributed to Jan Jansz. de Heem. The profusion of fruit, vegetables, crustacea, glass, silver, and porcelain affords the artist the opportunity to display his considerable imitative skill. On a deeper level the subject may be seen as a celebration of the fruits of civilisation, trade, peace and prosperity with the inclusion of imported objects such as the Chinese porcelain bowls. In contrast, the viewer is reminded of the transitory nature of human life and the dangers of over-indulgence in material excess by the inclusion of the broken column and classical frieze.
To make the Linoprints participants were asked to draw something that was special to them. The ladies then transferred their drawings onto a piece of lino and used lino cutters to cut out their designs. Participants then used inks and rollers to ink up their pieces of lino and then pressed their lino onto clean printing paper. Groups then reprinted their lino tiles experimenting with lots of different colours. Eventually, the ladies prints will be scanned into a computer and printed onto Lazertran transfer paper which will be applied to bisque vases and silk scrolls that will be displayed in the project participant’s final exhibition.
Although the ladies found cutting the lino quite difficult, they seemed to really enjoy printing their lino tiles and experimenting with printing in a variety of colours. Here are some pictures of the groups busy at work and the beautiful prints they created.