Création d'un Atelier de Gravure non-toxique à Pont Aven
Help launch the new Non-Toxic Printmaking Studio in Pont Aven, Brittany with Abi Parr !
Création d'un Atelier de Gravure non-toxique à Pont Aven
SUPPORT ONE OF THE FIRST NON-TOXIC PRINTING STUDIOS IN FRANCE !
Temps Presse is located in South Britanny in the town of Pont Aven.
Courses and workshops will be offered in French or English.......
SO, WHAT IS THE WORKSPACE LIKE?
The workshop is now finished (!) so the press has settled into its final destination. Paper chests have been installed as have the ceramic sink and acid tank. So close to rolling yet ...
... I need a little helping hand to buy material for the photopolymer etching and the aquatint equipment.
This workshop can easily facilitate different printing techniques such as Woodcuts and Linocuts, Dry Point, Photopolymer etching, Intaglio printing and, perhaps, other possibilities that I have yet to explore.
THE WORKSPACE IN 3 WAYS :
1) As an atelier for my personal creations and research. I will explore the potential of my new equipment whilst carrying out self-directed projects. Once I am completely familiar with the new materials, I will share my knowledge with others.
2) As a place to help other artists carry out their personal projects. I will happily provide technical support as well as critical feedback.
3) As a venue for short courses, ' taster sessions' or week-long intensives for those who wish to learn specific techniques and begin to unlock their potential. In addition to technical support and feedback, I plan to provide communal meals & refreshments in the AO2 space on the ground floor as part of the experience.
I AM BILINGUAL SO THESE ENCOUNTERS MAY BE OFFERED IN BOTH ENGLISH AND FRENCH.
Visitors may see the studio by appointment, during 'business hours' and during special events.
SO, WHY PONT AVEN ?
I've set-up my workshop above Art de l'Oisiveté 2 (AO2), an establishment created nearly six years ago by my partner and me. AO2 is far more than a bar; it regularly hosts concerts, film screenings, gatherings of games-enthusiasts and all kinds of art-related activities. AO2 recently became an association and although we are still very involved in the project, I am now able to pursue my art with more intensity. An ongoing connection between of my studio and AO2's exhibition space guarantees a public venue to showcase prints and other artworks; in turn, my workshop is a valuable tool for the creation of posters and flyers for the association.
It's important that you know that I love Pont Aven but I believe there are few, if any, outlets for creative activity not beholden to commercial interests. The establishment of l'Art de l'Oisiveté was less about money but more about community, creativity and shared experience. My attention is now more focussed as I aim to promote a space for visual arts experimentation via printmaking and its transmission to a larger public. Personally, I often make multiples as limited editions with hopes that they might be accessible to all.
ABOUT MY BACKGROUND:
I pursued my Master's Degree in Fine Arts at l'Ecole Supérieure d'Art EESAB in Quimper, France where I learnt traditional etching techniques. I truly loved printmaking, especially intaglio (aquatint). At the end of my studies, I was six months pregnant yet continued etching during that final year albeit wearing a mask and, sometimes, gloves. Committed to protecting my baby, I wore cumbersome protection that made me ill at ease. Nonetheless, I constantly worried about the inhalation of toxic vapours as well as the White Spirit seeping through my pores...so I left my love of etching knowing well that I would resume its exploration at some later date.
As is turns out, I'm glad that I did not launch my workshop project earlier because it would have been a traditional etching studio; I did not know that there were safer (and more cost effective) alternatives.
What brought this revelation? Last autumn, I enrolled in a non-toxic printmaking course with Henrik Boegh in Capiliera, Spain. He demonstrated multiple techniques with seemingly infinite possibilities. Superposition of images from different sources and their translation in both texture and form inspire all kinds of two-dimensional prints. I explored some of these possibilities but want to discover more then share what I've learned with others, whether as my own experimental prints for sale or as shared workshop time.
I started Henrik's course expecting it to enable me to resume traditional etching methods while using 'safe' products in a non-toxic environment. It offered a healthier context but, to my surprise, everyday was a discovery of new, exciting ways to print and build bridges between different categories of images. I left Capiliera with 'wings' and an urgent need to set up my own workshop in Pont Aven.
A FEW TECHNICAL WORDS, the basics
We can combine 3 ways to produce an image on the same flat surface : the possibilities of non-toxic printmaking easily allow analogue images (hand crafted) photos and digital images to be superimposed.
The photopolymer film (used initially for circuit boards) is laminated onto a copper plate and the chosen image is then etched into the surface of the film through a process using UV light. The use of a digital aquatint screen provides a slightly rugged texture in order to provide uniform grays. The photopolymer film is removed after the end of the printing process, so these new techniques are cost effective because the same copper plates can be used over and over again.
Acrylic based aquatint is applied to the plates with an airbrush. The small dots allow the plates to be etched evenly when plunged into the acid tank. This replaces the use of traditional aquatint powder which creates nasty odeurs when applied and needs strong solvants to be removed. Varnish is replaced by safer alternatives that are also easy and safe to remove.
The results of these new techniques are just as delicate and beautiful as traditional methods.
My new studio space allows for copper etching which protects both the artist and the environment without compromising quality.
These new methods began around 1995 in the States. The French, however, are somewhat reticent about converting their workshops and often choose to perpetuate traditional methods.
I believe that we have a personal and universal responsibility to protect others and the environment. My studio is one step in that direction.
Waar dient de collecte voor
I need your help to provide all the technical material and tools for photopolymer etching, enough paper, inks and stationary etc to offer courses and share the space.
There are specific needs linked to photopolymer etching :
- UV cabinet with vacuum frame and aquatint screen
- Aquatint cabinet with airbrush, compressor
- Drying cabinets x2
- A second sink to clean and prepare copper plates (to allow a smooth circulation in the space)
- an assortment of small tools for different types of etching & printing (dry points, rollers etc....)
- a range of special pens, stationary for creating images on the transparent paper used for photopolymer etching
- developing trays, stop watches, felt mats for the press, acid for the tank... inks (black and colors), paper, special acrylic based products... ink jet transparent film, task specific A3 printer. Copper plates of different sizes, lino, tarlatan.....
If the funding exceeds my goal, I would buy a digital camera.
Not only would i be able to document work created in the workshop (by myself and other artists), the camera would facilitate photo etching for workshop participants.