Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Huge woodcuts at Holcombe Mill

I recently went to Holcombe Mill in Nailsworth to see the ArtsAid exhibition raising money for the Cotswold Care Hospice. I was particularly interested to see the large scale relief prints by sculptor and printmaker Simon Packard.

The black and white prints on show at the Mill are vast (between about 4 and 7ft tall) and were made using plates made from MDF . The images of bridges and city buildings look bold and spontaneous but in fact they must have taken ages to make. The way the exhibition was installed was interesting as well. The unfurled prints were suspended on hooks and wires from the ceiling, very unfussy and completely frameless. The exhibition has officially ended but I believe Simon's prints are returning there soon.

Simon taught us a couple of times when I was on the Access Course at Stroud College. His way of working then was very 'hands on', organic and painterly. He encouraged us to experiment, go large, make lots of monoprints and ghost images and work on top of them. We only had him once or twice but he certainly made an impression. We also went to see his studio which was in a deconsecrated chapel near the college. I haven't forgotten that either. An amazing and awe inspiring space.

College visit to Simon's studio in 2010