York Printmakers to mount sixth autumn print fair at York Cemetery on Sept 23 & 24

Rowntree Park, lino print, by Jo Rodwell

YORK Printmakers will hold their sixth Autumn Print Fair at York Cemetery Chapel and Harriet Room on September 23 and 24 from 10am to 5pm.

Set up in 2015 by a dozen printmakers from the York area, this thriving, diverse group now numbers around 40 enthusiastic artists, drawn from a wide range of printmaking backgrounds, from art students to professional artists.

Working independently, they come together to support and challenge each other by sharing opportunities, ideas and processes. 

“Our annual print fair is a well-established event in the city’s creative calendar, attracting people from across the country,” says printmaker, illustrator and graphic designer Jo Ruth.

Kilburn White Horse, lino print, by Michelle Hughes

“It’s our opportunity to exhibit current work and to share our ideas and processes with an interested audience.”

Artists often take inspiration from their surroundings, in this case York and beyond. “Some evoke memories through their prints, others celebrate historic views,” says Jo. “There will be plenty to explore as you see how some of our members have interpreted familiar views through their own eyes.  

“Our printmakers are no strangers to finding wonderful opportunities for creative ideas in and around York, both in the city and in the surrounding dramatic countryside. Some take inspiration from well-known landmarks; others look for beauty in less obvious places.”

For next month’s fair, Russell Hughes has produced a series of collagraph prints and collages inspired by walks around Richmond, North Yorkshire. “I interpret the variations encountered in our daily lives, recording experience in data, observing patterns in nature and in the built environment,” says this explorer of colour and pattern in handmade printmaking.

Trespassing, lino print, by Rachel Holborrow

Rachel Holborow’s lino print Trespassing explores the way the natural world rubs up against a more urban environment in its depiction of often-overlooked wild plants and flowers, such as poppies and chamomile, that populate the field margins along the A64.

Michelle Hughes creates linocut prints of iconic views of the Yorkshire countryside. “Walking and cycling in the area helps me to capture a sense of place,” she says. “I see so many different views of the Kilburn White Horse, even from Holgate Windmill in the street next to my studio.”

Other York Printmakers aim to evoke memories of a place or celebrate a well-known vista. Harriette Rymer, for example, produces delicate lino prints of flowers and has been inspired by the daffodils’ herald of springtime around the city walls.

Lino printer Jo Rodwell grew up in York. “There are so many sites and places that are familiar to me,” she says. “I try to capture the essence of a place and incorporate relatable local scenes that can trigger memories and make people talk about what it means to them. People can have their own relationship with my work and can place themselves in it, whatever their age.”

Minster In Bloom,  lino print, by Harriette Rymer

Etching, linocut, collagraph, monotype, screen print, solar plate, Japanese woodblock, lithography, stencilling and gel plate printing all will feature in the print fair.

“Our members have a wide range of printmaking backgrounds and experience, but we all share a passion for print,” says Jo Ruth. “We’re happy to chat about our ideas, processes and techniques.

“Some members also run printmaking courses, so this is also a great opportunity to find out more and chat to the artists behind the prints.”

Hundreds of original prints will be on show and for sale. Entry is free.

York Printmakers’ Autumn Print Fair, York Cemetery, Cemetery Road, York, September 23 and 24, 10am to 5pm. Fair visitors can walk around the tranquil cemetery grounds, rich with wildlife. For more details, go to: yorkprintmakers.org.uk

York Printmakers’ Autumn Print Fair 2023 poster, showing a detail of Russell Hughes’s collagraph print Variations VII (Forms)

Westside Artists to gain Momentum in summer show at Blossom Street Gallery

 Autonomous, mixed-media collage on box canvas, by Sharon McDonagh, long-listed for the 2021 Aesthetica Art Prize and now to be shown in the Momentum Summer Show at Blossom Street Gallery, York

YORK art group Westside Artists open their Momentum Summer Show at Blossom Street Gallery, by Micklegate Bar, York, on Friday (25/6/2021).

This coterie of artists from the Holgate and West area of York will be showing a varied range of disciplines, from painting and photomontage to textiles, ceramics and mixed-media art.

Among the participating artists, and a key organiser too, is Sharon McDonagh, from Holgate, who had her mixed-media work long-listed for this year’s Aesthetica Art Prize, whose accompanying exhibition is running at York Art Gallery. One of Sharon’s submitted pieces, Autonomous, is now featuring in the Momentum show.

Missy T, oil on canvas, by Lucie Wake

Joining her at Blossom Street Gallery are: Adele Karmazyn, digital photomontages; Carolyn Coles, seascapes; Donna Maria Taylor, mixed media; Ealish Wilson, textiles; Fran Brammer, textiles; Jane Dignum, prints; Jill Tattersall, mixed media; Kate Akrill, Skullduggery ceramics, and Lucy McElroy, portraits.

So too are: Lucie Wake, from Facet Painting, paintings and portraits; Marc Godfrey-Murphy, alias MarcoLooks, illustrations; Mark Druery, pen and watercolour sketches; Michelle Hughes, prints; Rich Rhodes, ceramics; Robin Grover-Jaques, painting and metalwork, and Simon Palmour, photographs.

The Momentum Summer Show will be gaining momentum until September 26. Gallery opening hours are: Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, 10am to 4pm; Covid-compliant measures are in place.

Untitled, ‘Dark and Light’ acrylic on canvas, by Robin Grover-Jacques

York Printmakers make their mark in online summer exhibition run by Pyramid Gallery

Jane Duke: One of more than 20 York Printmakers members on show online

YORK Printmakers are taking part in an online exhibition put together by Terry Brett for Pyramid Gallery, Stonegate, York.

More than 20 members of the association have submitted work for a show that will run until September 6, with more works being added daily.

On show at pyramidgallery.com are works by Carrie Lyall; Jane Dignum; Emily Harvey; Judith Pollock; Charlotte Willoughby-Paul; Lucie Ware; Michelle Hughes; Bridget Hunt; Chrissie Dell; Jane Duke; Sally Clarke and Jo Ruth.

See, linocut print, by Lucie Ware

Exhibiting too are Marc Godfrey-Murphy; Lyn Bailey; Lesley Shaw; Russell Hughes; Gill Douglas; Shaun Wyatt; Janice Simpson; Adi French; Greg Winrow; Sally Parkin and Patricia Ruddle.

“As a response to the Covid-19 social-distancing measures, Pyramid Gallery is open only to one person or group at a time,” says Terry, the gallery’s owner and curator.

“So, here is the show, for you, from the comfort of your sofa and laptop, or mobile device. Oh, how things have changed, and so much technology has been developed and embraced!”

Carrie Lyall at work in her studio

Putting his salesman’s hat on, Terry says: “Here’s the thing…if you enjoy looking at pictures on a screen, do you need them on your wall? Of course you do!

“On the screen, you can only properly see one at a time. There’s no creative effort on your part, so you cannot feel part of the creative process that is art. When you position pictures on the wall, however, you’re engaging with the space – your space – and the artwork.

“You’re creating a new artwork from those two elements. You are the artist, just as much as the creator of the artwork you have purchased and the designer of the building. You are not merely a purchaser of someone else’s work, but are a fundamental part of the creative community that creates art.

Beach Huts, Mudeford, linocut print, by Marc Godrey-Murphy

“Artists need you. You give affirmation of their artistic endeavour. You inspire them to create more art. You enable them to be artists. The art is not complete until it has been chosen and arranged in its space.”

For this show, the gallery commission is reduced. “That means the artists can either sell at a lower price or receive a bigger payment for work sold,” says Terry. “The artists will deliver or send the items as they are sold.

“Pyramid Gallery will promote the artists via our newsletter, website and social media all through the rest of summer.”

Wind Whispers, collagraph print, by Sally Clarke

Terry adds: “Although we will not be displaying the work in the gallery, we would love to know how you display the work when you place it in your house. Please send us pictures and we’ll put those online as well.”

Founded in 2015, York Printmakers are a diverse group of printmakers with a passion for print and a shared love of meeting each month at The Knavesmire pub, in Albemarle Road. 

Members use a variety of printmaking techniques, such as lino and wood cuts, collagraphs, screen printing and etching, to produce original limited-edition prints, covering a wide range of subject matter, with styles varying from illustrative to abstract.

In a closing message to art lovers, Terry, the Pyramid Gallery team and “all the wonderful artists in York” say: “We are all in this Corona thing together. Hopefully, art and creativity can help us all through.”

York FC Crowd, linoprint, by Shaun Wyatt

No York Open Studios in April, but all that art still needs a new home, so look here…DAY NINETEEN

Giraffe Whispers, by Ian Cameron

YORK Open Studios 2020, the chance to meet 144 artists at 100 locations over two April weekends, should have started with a preview this evening, but the annual event has been cancelled in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, with doors sadly shut for the April 17 to 19 and April 25 to 26 event, CharlesHutchPress wants to champion the creativity of York’s artists and makers, who would have been showcasing their ceramics, collage, digital, illustration, jewellery, mixed media, painting, print, photography, sculpture and textiles skills.

Each day, in brochure order, five artists who now miss out on the exposure of Open Studios will be given a pen portrait on these pages, because so much art and craft will have been created for the event and still needs a new home. Addresses will not be included at this time.

Meanwhile, York Open Studios artists are finding their own way to respond to the shutdown by filling their windows with their work instead.  Look for #openwindowsyork2020 to locate them. “If you see one in your area while taking your daily exercise, take a picture and let us know,” they say.

More Alike Than Different, by Lu Mason

 Lu Mason, multi-media

IN her latest work, Lu is looking at how we connect as human beings, using the theme that we are all cut from the same cloth.

“My installation consists of one long series of paper figures, all connected to each other, all cut out from the same roll of paper: More Alike Than Different,” she says.

Lu has had an unusual journey to where she is now as an artist. She worked for many years as an occupational therapist, but she always painted patterns for her own enjoyment and had a small business making rag rugs.

Lu Mason: Unusual journey

Fifteen years ago, she started making cut-paper mobiles, since when she has  enjoyed putting her work in public places in the form of installations, as well as creating mobiles using Perspex shapes over the past year.

“I make site-specific work, in collaboration with clients,” she says. “I’m interested in doing installations, residencies and workshops and I’m now producing a range of brooches made out of Perspex too.”

Lu was one of the 2020 York Open Studios multimedia bursary recipients in a scheme set up to enable artists to create experiences such as digital works, installations, films or performances for the annual event. Take a look at madebylumason.weebly.com.

Andre, by Nick Kobyluch

Nick Kobyluch, drawing

NICK’S pen and ink drawings explore line, form and colour through both landscape and portraiture work, most of his final pieces originating from drawings initially done in his sketchbooks.

Born in Bradford, he moved to London to work as a freelance illustrator for design, editorial and advertising clients, from the Observer and the National  Lottery to Barclays Bank and Oxford University Press, after completing his BA in graphic design at Hull College of Art in the 1980s.

Over the years, he has moved away from commercially commissioned work to pursue his own interests in drawing, motivated by a desire to experiment and evolve as a line artist, favouring the pen, “the most unforgiving of mediums”, over pencil and charcoal.

Nick Kobyluch: Motivated by a desire to experiment

The urban environment inspires Nick. “I love cities and the way they represent in complex physical form the many ways we interact as individuals and as a society,” he says. “It’s all there in the odd juxtapositions, hidden corners and strange compromises.”

He names Frans Masereel, George Grosz, Edward Bawden, Eric Ravillious, Richard Diebenkorn and David Gentleman as artists he “comes back to time and again”. “All share a mastery of line and form,” he says.

This would have been his first year as a York Open Studios exhibitor: the latest affirmation of his desire to “keep moving forward” as an artist. Contact him via nickkobyluch2@gmail.com.

Hole Of Horcum, by Michelle Hughes

Michelle Hughes, printmaking

MICHELLE is a printmaker and graphic designer, creating linocut prints inspired by nature and the great British countryside.

“I love exploring the countryside by bike or on foot, camera in hand, capturing ideas for my next prints,” she says.

Once back in her garden studio, Michelle makes simple but stylised silhouettes based on her photographs, then cuts these shapes into lino. She hand-prints with an etching press, using oil-based inks to create tonal blocks of colour.

Michelle Hughes: Artist and workshop tutor

For 25 years, Michelle designed homeware and fashion ranges for large corporate companies such as Disney, George Home at Asda, Arcadia and Shared Earth. In June 2016, she took the leap of faith to set up her own business, initially in graphic design, then printmaking, bringing together her love of craft, photography, colour, nature and exploring.

“I’ve always loved working with my hands and making things,” says Michelle, who also holds workshops in her Holgate studio. “I like the spontaneity of making marks with the tools, the quality of line and the graphic style of the final print. It enables me to distil the landscape down into simple lines.” 

Michelle has designed a series of a dozen linocuts, A Landscape Speaks, for the National Trust property Sutton Hoo in Suffolk. Learn more at michellehughesdesign.com/.

Oil on canvas by Lucy McElroy

Lucy McElroy, painting

AFTER 15 years as an art teacher, Lucy balances her time between the “joys and challenges of being a mother, teaching part-time at All Saints RC School and spending time developing her own practice in her home studio”.

“Traditional techniques enable me to create a true likeness of my subjects, while exploring ways to capture beautiful and emotive moments on paper and canvas,” says Lucy, who studied fine art at the University of Leeds. 

Lucy McElroy: Capturing beautiful and emotive moments

She works in pencil, pastel, charcoal and oil on canvas and finds time for a few portrait commissions each year, undertaken in between her own creative projects.

This would have been the first year that Lucy had participated in York Open Studios. View her work at lucymcelroy.co.uk.

The Blue Bell, in Fossgate, York, one of 30 new works Ian Cameron made for York Open Studios 2020

Ian Cameron, painting

IAN’S artwork is created using crayon wax rubbings, vibrant Brusho-coloured washes and Indian ink drawings, embellished with collage and watercolours to create a multi-layered effect.

“I love to draw in my sketchbook,” he says. “I usually draw with a black gel pen and often use watercolours. Sometimes I rub over embossed surfaces such as manhole covers with a wax crayon and then paint over with a colour wash to create a resist effect. The final picture has a great deal of depth brought about by the different layers or levels.”

Ian Cameron in the wooden studio he built in his garden

Ian developed an interest in art “quite late in life”, at 50 to be precise, in 2003 when he attended GCSE Art evening classes. A-level studies and an art and design foundation course at York College ensued.

2020 was to have been his seventh year in York Open Studios, exhibiting 30 new works created in the wooden studio he built in his back garden. For more info, visit ifcameron.tumblr.com.

TOMORROW: Fran Brammar; Geraldine Bilbrough; Ruth Claydon; Jacqueline James and Jean Drysdale.