it happened here...

Color Reduction Woodcut

2008

Each Print:
39 inches high x 20 feet wide

In 2008 I made a series of woodcut prints, each depicting a location spaced approximately one hundred miles apart along the five hundred mile drive from my hometown in Nebraska to Ft. Collins, Colorado.  An east-west drive that cut directly through the heart of the Great Plains.  The prints were each twenty feet in length and thirty-six inches high, the result of printing a unique woodcut block on a roll of Japanese Mulberry paper.  The block was printed five or six times across its length, with a slight seam evident at each repetition. I positioned the horizon line at the same point, nine inches from the bottom of the page for each print.  The details of carving the image of each place visited and the subtle differences in coloring were the qualities that distinguished one print from another.

Only one print was installed at a time, but often it was assumed that I kept hanging the same print over and over.  The prints asked for viewers’ participation in looking. The size and coloring of the print might be the first feature to captivate passersby, and then as they continued to look, they would begin to see the details – the earth formations and grasses represented through very delicate carving of the wood, the seams that indicated it was a repeated scene.  Viewing these large prints caused the eye to go back and forth between the contained whole of the paper and the particular details.  Each print could be explored.  Eventually, three prints were installed together, emphasizing the differences between them.  This expanded the experience from observing one print to comparing the three.  Now the prints could be viewed in their entirety as a group and they could be studied individually.

August 11, 2009

 


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