‘Collaboration in Practice: British Lithography 1800-2022’ – 24th October 2022 to 27th January 2023, School of Art Galleries

Interior of the Piccolomini Library at Siena, after Bernardino Pinturicchiodi Betto (c.1454-1513), printed by Storch & Kramer, published by the Arundel Society 1880

This exhibition offers a visual narrative of British lithography from its beginnings at the turn of the 19th century to the present day. Many of the prints on show are taken from the Aberystwyth University School of Art Collections.

Since its invention by Alois Senefelder in 1798, lithography has always been perceived as the most difficult of printmaking processes. The technical skill required by the complexity of the process has necessarily required collaboration between the artist and printer, and the narrative of this exhibition is focused through the lens of that process. The first collaboration of this sort in Britain took place in 1801 between Philipp André, trained by Senefelder, and artists from the Royal Academy in London, published as Specimens of Polyautography and comprising pen and ink drawings printed from lithographic stone.

In the following two hundred years, significant pairings of artists and printers have contributed to the technical and aesthetic development of lithography into a sophisticated process, capable of rendering chalk and wash drawing and a full range of tone and colour. Such pairings of printer and artist are represented in this exhibition: D J Redman with the artist Thomas Barker of Bath; Louis Haghe and David Roberts; Thomas Way and his son Thomas Robert Way with James Abbott McNeil Whistler.

By the second half of the twentieth century, fine art lithography became detached from commercial chromolithography with the establishment of collaborative practice based on the Parisian ‘atelier’ model by such presses such as Miller’s Press in1945, Harley’s in Edinburgh in the 1950s and Stanley Jones at the Curwen Studio in 1958. Stanley Jones has been at the centre of a seismic transformation in contemporary fine art lithography and has worked with nearly every post-war British artist working in the medium, including Barbara Hepworth, Terry Frost, Ceri Richards, John Piper, Henry Moore and Paula Rego.

Contemporary studios offering professional collaboration and editioning services for artists, such as Edinburgh Printmakers, Hole Editions, Redbreast Editions, Oaks Park Studio and Lemonade Press, are thus indebted to the legacy of Jones at the Curwen Studio. They have also benefitted from the training of collaborative printers, who have since set up studios or teach at colleges across Britain. Research into and the development of lithographic practice has not been confined to Britain, and much is owed to the research undertaken at the Tamarind Institute in Albuquerque during the last sixty years.

Paul Croft, the curator of this exhibition, qualified as a Master Printer at the Tamarind Institute in 1996 and now teaches printmaking here at the School of Art in Aberystwyth.

Paul Scott: New American Scenery – Ceramic Gallery, Aberystwyth Arts Centre – 9 July-25 September 2022

Paul Scott is well known for his provocative, politically conscious work. He uses familiar transfer-printed tableware designs like the Willow Pattern to comment on our life and times. This exhibition features ceramics inspired by the so-called ‘American transfer-ware’ that was made in 19th century Staffordshire and decorated with imagery celebrating the new American republic.

Many of the pieces on display have resulted from periods of travel and research in the USA, when he studied examples of American transfer-ware and visited the locations depicted. Paul’s up-dated views reflect current events as well as historical, social and environmental change. Back-stamps are printed on the reverse of each piece. Part signature, part narrative, they often provide substantial information about the subjects depicted.

These ceramics have involved technical wizardry. The original visual motifs of central image and border pattern are manipulated and seamlessly altered. Undecorated antique pieces are over-printed with contemporary views. Sometimes the Japanese method of Kintsugi has been employed, applying a mixture of resin and gold leaf to joins and cracks, thus honouring the marks of time and use.

Paul Scott is based in Cumbria, North West England. This exhibition marks 20 years since his work was first shown in the Ceramics Gallery at Aberystwyth Arts Centre. His ceramics are now held in many important collections world-wide, including the V&A Museum London, The National Decorative Arts Museum Norway, The Museum of Art and Design New York, The Smithsonian Institute Washington and Los Angeles County Museum of Art. He was awarded a PhD in 2010 by Manchester Metropolitan University, where he was Research Fellow from 2012-2014. From 2011-2017 he was Professor of Ceramics at Oslo National Academy of Art. His book on the creative application of print techniques to clay is considered a definitive text. Ceramics and Print London: Bloomsbury; Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania 2013 [1994]

Jo Dahn June 2022.

Jo Dahn is an independent writer, curator and researcher. She is the author of new directions in ceramics; from spectacle to trace (Bloomsbury 2015)

Research in the USA supported by the Alturas Foundation

Research at Wedgwood, Spode and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London was supported by Arts Council England.

Mae Paul Scott yn adnabyddus am ei waith heriol a gwleidyddol. Mae’n defnyddio llestri bwrdd wedi’u hargraffu â troslun, gyda dyluniadau cyfarwydd fel y patrwm helyg glas, i wneud sylwadau ar ein bywyd a’n hamseroedd ni. Mae’r arddangosfa hon yn cynnwys crochenwaith a ysbrydolwyd gan y ‘llestri troslun Americanaidd’ fel y’u gelwir, a wnaed yn y 19eg ganrif yn Swydd Stafford a’u haddurno â delweddau sy’n dathlu’r weriniaeth Americanaidd newydd.

Mae llawer o’r darnau sy’n cael eu harddangos wedi deillio o gyfnodau o deithio ac ymchwil yn UDA, pan oedd yn astudio enghreifftiau o lestri troslun Americanaidd ac ymweld â’r lleoliadau a ddangoswyd yn y dyluniadau. Mae’r golygfeydd cyfredol a ddarlunnir gan Paul yn adlewyrchu digwyddiadau heiddiw yn ogystal â newidiadau hanesyddol, cymdeithasol ac amgylcheddol. Mae stampiau cefn wedi’u hargraffu ar gefn pob darn. Llofnod yw’r rhain yn rhannol, ond maent heyfd yn naratif, ac yn aml yn darparu gwybodaeth sylweddol am y pynciau a ddarlunnir.

Mae’r darnau hyn wedi’u creu drwy ddewiniaeth dechnegol. Mae’r motiffau gweledol gwreiddiol, sef y ddelwedd ganolog a phatrwm yr ymyl, yn cael eu trin a’u newid yn ddi-dor. Mae darnau hynafol diarddurn wedi cael eu gorargraffu â golygfeydd cyfoes. Weithiau defnyddiwyd y dull Siapaneaidd o’r enw Kintsugi, gan roi cymysgedd o resin a dalen aur ar linellau asio a holltiau, gan ymfalchïo yn yr olion amser ac ôl defnydd sydd ar llestri.

Mae Paul Scott yn byw yn Cumbria, yng ngogledd-orllewin Lloegr. Mae’r arddangosfa hon yn nodi 20 mlynedd ers i’w waith gael ei ddangos yn yr Oriel Gerameg yng Nghanolfan Gelfyddydau Aberystwyth am y tro cyntaf. Mae enghreifftiau o’i grochenwaithbellach ar gadw mewn llawer o gasgliadau pwysig ledled y byd, gan gynnwys Amgueddfa V&A Llundain, Amgueddfa Celfyddydau Addurnol Genedlaethol Norwy, Amgueddfa Gelf a Dylunio Efrog Newydd, Sefydliad Smithsonian Washington, ac Amgueddfa Gelf Sirol Los Angeles. Dyfarnwyd PhD iddo yn 2010 gan Brifysgol Fetropolitan Manceinion, lle bu’n Gymrawd Ymchwil o 2012-2014. Rhwng 2011 a 2017 bu’n Athro Cerameg yn Academi Gelf Genedlaethol Oslo. Mae ei lyfr ar gymhwyso technegau argraffu yn greadigol ar glai yn cael ei ystyried yn destun awdurdodol. Ceramics and Print Llundain: Bloomsbury; Philadelphia: Prifysgol Pennsylvania 2013 [1994]

Jo Dahn Mehefin 2022.

Mae Jo Dahn yn awdur, curadur ac ymchwilydd annibynnol. Hi yw awdur new directions in ceramics; from spectacle to trace  (Bloomsbury 2015)

Noddwyd yr ymchwil yn UDA gan Sefydliad Alturas

Noddwyd yr ymchwil yn Wedgwood, Spode ac Amgueddfa Victoria ac Albert, Llundain gan Gyngor Celfyddydau Lloegr.

‘+Positive’, Exhibition at the School of Art Gallery, 7 – 14 June 2022

An exhibition of work on the theme of climate change by student finalists in the 2021 and 2022 Art+Science Competition for the Gwenllian Ashley Art Prize

Art+Science, a Ceredigion based charity that is devoted to using the arts to raise awareness about climate change, has held an annual competition for the last two years for students at HE and FE art schools and colleges in Ceredigion. Robert Davies, speaking on behalf of Art+Science, explains that “Each year we invite the students to make a piece of art, in any media (film, painting, photography, fashion, textiles etc) that relates to the changing climate and the human impacts we see”. This year’s competition was called ‘+ Positive’ and asked for work that celebrates positive responses to climate change or mitigations to off-set human activity.

The finalists have been selected to exhibit their work at the School of Art, Aberystwyth University. The annual Gwenllian Ashley art prize, named in memory of the well-loved art curator, will be awarded at the opening event. The exhibition will also show work by the finalists from the 2021 competition. In all, 18 students will be exhibiting their work. This stimulating exhibition is on show from 7th – 14th June 2022 and members of the public are invited to come to see the work by new artists who have a vision for a better future.

In addition to the ‘+ Positive’ exhibition, Art+Science is involved in a variety of activities to help raise awareness of climate change, including working with primary school aged children in Ceredigion & Powys. Specialist teachers are providing specifically focused classes, workshops and field trips to promote a clear understanding of the science behind climate change, the challenges ahead and to offer a stimulus for creative responses from our young students, the emphasis being on positive change for the future.

Arddangosfa Goffa i Ddathlu Bywyd a Gwaith  – A Memorial Exhibition to Celebrate the Life and Work of John Jones(1932‒2021), 14 February to 29 April 2022, School of Art Gallery

This exhibition contains a selection of prints, lino cuts, etchings and screen prints including early work from 1953, made during John’s student days in Cardiff College of Art. Also included are his hand-woven rugs, experimental constructions using cork, string and metal stencilled letters, original lino blocks, etching plates and print-making tools.

For more information and to book your free visit, please click here: soaexhibition.eventbrite.co.uk

‘Contatti Ricordati / Connections Remembered’, 22 November 2021 – 28 January 2022, School of Art Gallery

20th century Italian Photographs selected from the Aberystwyth University School of Art Museum and Galleries collection, curated by Robert Greetham and including work by: Mario Giacomelli, Carlo Bevilacqua. Elio Ciol and Ferruccio Leiss.

Please book your free visit here: soaexhibition.eventbrite.co.uk

Scanno, 1957-59, Mario Giacomelli (1925-2000) ©Heirs Mario Giacomelli

‘Picture a Dog’ – Exhibition ‘Spin offs’

The Picture a Dog-exhibition was on at the School of Art Gallery from mid-July until the end of August and again from mid-October until mid-November 2021. During that time, we asked visitors, both to the gallery and this blog, to send us pictures of their dogs to be shown alongside the show. Continue reading

“Inconvenient Objects”: Curating works from the School of Art Collection – School of Art Galleries – until 1st October 2021

This year’s student-curated exhibition at Aberystwyth University’s School of Art enters into wider dialogues around how museums deal with troublesome objects in their collections. It aims to make the challenges of museum display and interpretation transparent. Continue reading