Cutting Edge: The British Print from Hayter to Hockney 1960 to 1980
Including work by Stanley William Hayter, Jeffrey Steele, Ian Hamilton Finlay, William Scott, John Piper and David Hockney
This exhibition surveys the cutting edge of British printmaking from the 1960s to the early 1980s. It has been chosen chiefly from the Aberystwyth University School of Art Collection that benefitted from a gift of prints from the Arts Council of Wales in 2002.
In the 1960s, British artists broke away from traditional making techniques, not only in painting and sculpture but also in printmaking. Printmaking had enjoyed a revival in the first decades of the twentieth century with an emphasis on etching that required highly accomplished figure or landscape drawing as well as expertise in the craft elements of printmaking.
In the ‘60s British artists began to use screen-printing which suited both hard-edged Abstractionist and Pop Art imagery, inspired by the example of American artists working in New York earlier in the decade. Op Art, with its use of stripes and dots, also gained much from the clean-cut, industrial nature of silkscreen printing. At the same time, new experiments in lithography and combinations of techniques, often employing photographs and collage, meant that British printmaking became a vibrant and exciting form.