This post is very late in being written but here goes. Back in December on the last possible day to see it, we went to see an exhibition of Picasso’s Prints at Compton Verney.
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take any photo’s whilst in the exhibition but I did some observational drawings of prints which caught my eye as we went along. It was an interesting exhibition which had a mix of style of printmaking. There were linocut reduction prints, mono-print’s, etchings, and even finger printed images. Most interesting was how he dabbled with printing over a period of years, he didn’t really start printing in earnest until his 60’s and then continued to refine his ideas for years.
The drawings on the left were of lithographic prints which Picasso created for book illustrations. These were earlier in his print explorations. But they still feel like works of Picasso.
In the sketch below is a drawing of a multi-coloured linocut print on first look it appeared like a simple print. Except the longer I looked at it the more intricate the print appeared, a mix of interlocking shapes with the typical style of Picasso. It had an interesting palette of colours, brown, terracotta, cream and yellow.
One of my favourite prints was a delicate mono-print which was a drawing of Picasso’s wife with his son. It’s light on detail but has a real effortless feel, a tenderness to it. Maybe that’s reading too much into it but that’s what I could see.
The gallery had some carbon paper so I had a second go at sketching the drawing but I guess with a form of printing.
I did one final drawing of a really complex linocut print. I didn’t manage to finish sketching it because it was so complex, images within images it seemed! I think I must’ve stood and sketched for 40 minutes and the result it a partially complete drawing.
What was most surprising and exciting about the exhibition was seeing the breadth of creative expression Picasso found in Printmaking. He used it as a tool to express himself, an extension to his voice as an Artist. I feel that personally I haven’t really found full confidence in my own ‘voice’ as an Artist, so it’s interesting exploring printmaking at this stage. Everything is just slightly off or not how I imagined. But one thing that the exhibition taught me was that it takes a lifetime to develop a ‘voice’. Picasso spent his whole life exploring various art forms and it made his creative expression rich and full.