This week we have the privilege and pleasure of sharing Cathie Crawford’s works of art and the process of creating her fantastic work. Thank you Cathie for sharing with all of us! Cathie Crawford’s works of art are on display at the Peoria Public Library Main Branch in the Gallery from 09/04/19-09/28/19.
Cathie Crawford Artist / Printmaker
Originally from New York City, Cathie lived overseas six years in Saudi Arabia and France with her husband Rich McBride. She has concentrated on the color reduction woodcut since earning an MFA degree in 1987 from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois where she had a one-person retrospective in December of 2016. She returned to Peoria in 2004 from France.
Her work has been included in more than three hundred exhibitions, thirty solo exhibitions, eighty juried national shows and sixteen international juried exhibitions since completing a BFA from The Ohio State University in Columbus Ohio. Crawford has received forty awards at both the national and regional level. Her woodcuts have been exhibited in twenty-eight states as well as France, Poland, Saudi Arabia, and the United Kingdom.
Crawford’s prints are included in private and corporate collections in eight countries including the International Print Center New York in New York City; The American University Museum in Washington DC; The Safeya Binzagr Darat in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the Newark Public Library, Newark, New Jersey and the Peoria Riverfront Museum in Peoria, Illinois. www.cathiecrawford.com
My color reduction woodcuts celebrate the magical moments of my life:
Bliss of Being. I strive to capture the truth and beauty of my subjects. Deeply enamored with the ever-changing hues of water, sky and land, I use color for its emotional impact. I have always been especially attracted to water, seeking it out for its restorative powers. Taking a break from figurative, my recent work is more nonobjective. This new direction is the converging of line, shape, color and texture in an ambiguous space that whispers elements of the landscape.
PROCESS Crawford prints reductively from one piece of ¼” luan plywood. Her small editions are known for luminous color achieved by numerous blended (rainbow) rolls of transparent ink applied with brayers and litho roller to the woodcut printing matrix. Mylar stencils expand the color possibilities for each woodcut print by allowing her to work reductively within a given shape. She prints on handmade Japanese Kozo paper with oil base relief inks and the aid of a Dickerson Combination press. She demonstrates her process in a short YouTube video: Cathie Crawford Printmaker. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_jFEZZ9_S0
THE COLOR REDUCTION WOODCUT
The reduction method of printing color woodcuts is best described by its name. The printing matrix, a single block of wood, is “reduced” (cut away) in numerous stages to produce a multicolored print on paper requiring several “runs” through a printing press. The first color is sometimes printed from the whole block. Sometimes a minimal amount of wood is removed to designate the first color, which will actually be the color of the paper showing through.
The size of the edition must be determined with the printing of the first color, as there is no possibility of reprinting due to the “reduction” (destruction) of the block. After the first color is printed, all ink is removed from the block. All areas of the block, which are to remain this color in the finished image, are then cut away. The entire block is inked and printed in the second color depositing ink over the first color except in the newly cut areas. This process of cutting and inking is repeated until the image is complete.
I also frequently use mylar stencils to work reductively within a given shape within the image. My printing matrix is one block of ¼” luan mahogany plywood.
I print on handmade Japanese kozo paper with oil based relief inks. Using brayers or a litho roller to apply the ink to the wood, I frequently include blended (split font) rolls of several colors. Spectrum was completed in only two runs thru the press while Sab pan yu took twenty-one runs. All my work is archivally framed.
You can see me printing two of the 15 runs for Lovely Legs in a You Tube video: Cathie Crawford Printmaker. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_jFEZZ9_S0
My color reduction woodcuts celebrate the magical moments of my life: Bliss of Being.
I strive to capture the truth and beauty of my subjects. Some images deal with a particular feeling or emotion I have toward my immediate environment (Table Talk). Festina Lente, Maassalehma mes cheries (goodbye my dears), Engage la Beauté, Monsieur Blanc n’est pas blanc and Resonant Reflections are close up views of my water garden. Fenêtre sur Les Trois Pucelles is the velux view from my studio skylight in Pariset, France.
Deeply enamored with the ever-changing hues of water, sky and land, I use color for its emotional impact. I have always been especially attracted to water, seeking it out for its restorative powers. (Le bon vivant) Water represents a powerful life giving force — a source of replenishment, rejuvenation or rebirth (Risorgimento). Some woodcuts involve a close up view of an underwater world. Pool Play is an underwater view of children playing in a pool with an inner tube. In Pursuit of a Damselfish, Healing Waters and Too Cute to Eat recall scuba diving experiences. My love of water aerobics (which I have been teaching for twelve years) turned into the underwater view, Lovely Legs.
Other images such as Flight to Lucaya and Kaibab have an aerial perspective inspired by photographs taken while flying with my private pilot husband. Photographs taken while flying over the deserts of Nevada and Utah inspired Sel Sans L’eau. Aerial Prism and Illinois Heartscatpe are a celebration of the colors and patterns found in aerial views of the Midwest.
My travels have inspired several prints. A weeklong kayaking trip in the Pacific Northwest was the stimulus for Orca. The thrill of seeing about 30 Orcas close to shore at sunset on San Juan Island is captured in Whale of a Sunset. Likeness of Being is of a Florida heron and his reflection in the water. A brief encounter with a Bedouin woman in Jordan who had facial tattoos was the impetus for Jamal Al Hickma (the beauty of wisdom). L’entrée began during an extraordinary moment in the Alcazar in Southern Spain. A trip to Thailand and an interest in Buddhism as well as contemporary Theology evolved into Sab pan yu.
Taking a break from figurative, Breaking, Serendipity, Spectrum, Homage to Hokusia, Serenity, Mystic, Samsara Luna Sea, Noumena and the diptych Surge are more non-objective. The Pluvious and Dianoia series, Dayenu, Lisière and Inception and Synergy are monoprints. This new direction is the converging of line, shape, color and texture in an ambiguous space with whispers of landscape.
Cathie Crawford’s works of art are on display at the Peoria Public Library Main Branch in the Gallery from 09/04/19-09/28/19. Pictures do not do justice to her work and the feelings evoked while viewing.
The Art of Peoria
I am amazed and appreciate the art of Peoria. Our city has so much to offer from painting, dance, theatre, choir, orchestra, fiber, photography and much more. This week has been an extraordinary weekend of art!
Thursday kicked off with an exhibit at Ethan Allen. A beautiful building perfect for an opening. We wandered through each artists area and viewed incredible works of art.
Cari Lepper shared her unique works of art with us. We learned how she began and has developed her own techniques along the way.
Next, we moved to a beautiful work by local artist Michelle Gulatto. Michelle is an awesome painter and organizer of artists events. She is a joy.
Hey Lola was in attendance with her jewelry and paintings. She has so much talent and a wide genre of art.
Erik Scot shared his fabulous works with us. Always good to see Erik and his detailed work. He is also a tattoo artist.
Josh Hawkins shared his work with us as well. His pieces are original and provoke thought. Josh is laid back and creative.
Jeremy Berkely was on exhibit with his incredible works. Always a warm welcome and smile when we see Jeremy. Detailed and original works of art on display.
Thomas Pries on exhibit with his glamorous jewelry and painted silk scarves. A gorgeous accent to any ensemble. Thank you Tom for the invitation! Always wonderful to see you!
Cathie Crawford brought her elaborate works of art. Her prints take you away and provide a relaxing view.
We had the pleasure of meeting Ken Tiesson. He is a skilled painter and learning about him and his works was remarkable.
A big thank you to all the organizers, business owners and artists for an incredible evening of art. We look forward to future events!