Rheged Makes Its Mark In 2023 With A Celebration Of UK Printmaking

Plant based dyes, environmentally friendly printmaking, and Gunning Printing Presses are just some of the new elements of Great Print 8, Rheged’s free flagship Exhibition celebrating the art of hand pulled prints. Opening on 20 Jan, this 14 week exhibition will include 58 printmakers from across the UK, over 400 framed prints for sale and 20 new printmakers who have never exhibited in Rheged Gallery.

This year's Print Exhibition sees a special partnership with Madder Cutch & Co with a curated studio corner, looking at sustainable printmaking using plant-based dyes. This complements the rise in creatives look to using more environmentally friendly and sustainable materials in their practice. Based in Stamford, Lincolnshire, Madder Cutch & Co produce hand-screen printed linen for home furnishings, using plant based dyes and pigments. Woad, madder, cutch, and weld, are a few of the plant extracts used in their dyes, as well as pigments such as charcoal. The curated studio corner will display hanging printed fabrics, used silkscreens, and plant material used in the dye making process.

The exhibition will also look at the impact The Gunning Press has made on print making today. Created in the 1980s, at a time when there were no presses on the market that printed to a remarkable standard as multi-printers, the Gunning press prints all kinds of plates from intaglio to relief and is now used by 1000s of artists. The Gunning Family have kindly provided three Gunning Presses for visitors to see in the exhibition. The Gunning’s are a family of printmakers, the exhibition includes prints created by Dave Gunning, Jenny Mason- Gunning and Dave Mason- Gunning.

Curated by Rheged’s Gallery Manager, Claire Harrison, the exhibition celebrates printmakers and the diverse methods used in printmaking such as screen printing, linocut, woodcut, etching, and cyanotype. Visitors can learn about printmaking techniques used in featured videos and printing blocks on display. All the prints are original hand-pulled pieces of artwork and are all available to buy.

Curator Claire Harrison said “ We are excited to unveil this year’s collection of prints. The exhibition will house a wide range of printmaking techniques and supports the talent of printmakers from all over the UK. We have work from 12 Cumbrian printmakers including Polly Marix Evans, Sarah Cemmick and Robert Finch. As well as renowned artists Gail Brodholt and Bryan Angus. We are always looking to include new printmakers each year, this year to name a few we have Katy Binks, Karen Wicks, and Freyja Caskie showing with us for the first time.”

Alongside the exhibition, there is a range creative classes led by the exhibiting artists including Sue Rowland, Hester Cox, Laura Sowerby, Liz Jones and David Lush, practical classes where participants can learn the art of linocut with botanical or wildlife prints or experiment with the art of cyanotype or collagraphs.

The exhibition is free entry, with no need to book, open daily 9am till 5:30pm from Friday 20th January 2023 to Sunday 7th May 2023.

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