The Center for Book Arts is excited to be offering a new class: Printing Relief Blocks on the Vandercook with Master Printer Barbara Henry the weekend of May 3rd and 4th from 10am to 4pm. The class will serve as an introduction to the art of relief printmaking and will survey the options, including woodcut, linocut and wood engraving. Students will be able to try out a variety of tools and print a small edition of exploratory work on the Vandercook proof press. What’s the difference between those techniques, you ask?I’m so glad you did!
|Woodblock and print on a Sherlock Holmes page|
Woodblocks, which are carved with traditional woodcutting tools, give the artist the ability to highlight the grain of the wood, and to carve out larger areas of the block, rather than thin lines, resulting in a more graphic style.
Linocuts, on the other hand, are carved into sheets of linoleum. This technique is obviously a more modern one, as linoleum hadn’t been invented when relief printing was first used. Linoleum is physically easier to cut into. It also provides a smoother look, compared to woodblock, where the texture of the wood is often visible in the prints. Both techniques are widely used and are mostly a matter of preference. Participants in the class will be able to experiment with a multitude of techniques and materials.
|Wood Engraving V. Wood Cut|
|Cut linoleum block|
The class is planned in conjunstion with the Medium as Muse: Woodcuts and the Modern Book exhibition at the Morgan Library. Works on view, drawn from the Morgan’s collections, survey illustrated publications from 1890 to 1935, contextualizing them within their idealized past—in touchstones of medieval and Renaissance book design—and mapping potential trajectories in experimental animation, the fine press, and works by graphic artists today. To learn more about the exhibition see here, and to sign up for the class visit our website!
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