Saturday, February 12, 2011

Fabric of the Gulf: Greed and Lies

Finally I am back to my other love: the woodblock.  I've had this block carved and proofed and ready to go for months, but other deadlines kept pushing it to the back of the line.  Then North Bank Gallery decided to do a Seven Deadly Sins show and I was half way there!  Where on earth was their less greed and lies than in the Gulf Oil spill of this last year?  I figured I probably had all the sins covered with this one print, almost all, anyway.

It is a little hard to tell one thing from another in these photos and, of course, I do not have a flat print - that will have to be another day.  Actually, there are two blocks on this piece - the "bp"(not shown) are printed in British Petroleum green.
I pulled about 6 prints onto a very thin and silky paper with a white on white design.  While waiting for them to dry I found a piece of melmanine composite board which I cut to the size I needed and screwed a cardboard bolt form, and some wooden reinforcement, to it. I'd forgotten how much fun it is to run the saws, drill press, sander, etc., and the resulting mess there is to clean up.
When the prints were dry enough to work with I proceeded to wrap the bolt form, first with a piece of Sommerset white paper and then around several times with the silky woodblock prints until I had a bolt of the Fabric of the Gulf.

It looks like fabric - even the feel of it gives you much more of a sense of fabric than fabric itself.  So, why didn't I just print it on fabric and have it over with?  Oh, who knows, I kind of like the idea that it is one thing representing another -- especially with the theme of the show being sin and I'm working with greed and lies.  And this paper is so thin and silky and though it is probably tougher than wine leather, it has a very fragile appearance - not unlike the gulf ecosystem.
The top of the bolt is, more or less, authentic (big lie), too – however what it says is the truth!

I'm hoping you can click on that and be able to read it - if not it says: Gulf Black Plague, 100% oil pollution, Machine wash cool, certified dispersants, lie, lie, lie.  And where the price is: $200 billion.

That about covers it - I will pull a regular, "hang on the wall" print tomorrow!

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