‘51.34 North 1.46 West’
Swansea Print Workshop Group Show ’51.34 North 1.46 West’, the first group show from the Workshop to be seen internationally was open to our Full members.
The exhibition catalogue is available for download (pdf file approx 1.5Mb)
Taking part were:Lynne Bebb Sheila Clark Rose Davies Elissa Evans Ayesha Farooq Alan Figg Jackie Ford Sarah Hopkins Veronica Gibson Zena James Rhian Jarman Aleem dad Khan Sameera Khan Robert Macdonald Lorna Packer Ruth Parmiter Carys Roberts Judith Stroud Kara Seaman Alan Williams
May 2007: Alhambra Arts Centre, Lahore, Pakistan
April 2007: Nomad Gallery, Islamabad, Pakistan
Foreword by Robert Macdonald: Chair of The Welsh Group
Robert Macdonald Director: Swansea Print Workshop
Wales is a Celtic nation with very different traditions to that of its larger neighbour, England, to the east. Artistically it has always been famed for its musicality, and known in the past as, ‘The Land of Song’; but little has been heard of its visual arts.
This has begun to change. For various reasons, (some of them economic), the number of painters and sculptors making their home in Wales has grown dramatically in the past 20 or 30 years. Alas, the artistic infrastructure to support them has not expanded in a similar way. There is no Welsh gallery of contemporary art; no Welsh Visual Arts magazine; little tradition of criticism.
But for painters and printmakers like myself the arrival of the Swansea Print Workshop has been an enormous boon. Throughout Britain such workshops have kept alive the vital traditions of printmaking that many art schools have abandoned in their rush to embrace modern technologies of computer-based imagery and the digital revolution. This is not to say that the print workshops have remained stuck in the past. Many new techniques have been introduced, and the Swansea workshop has been in the forefront of moves to use new and safer materials and methods. For an artist like myself, privileged to have worked in my early years in the grand printmaking department of the Central School of Art in London when the tutors included some of Britain’s best-known experts in etching, block printing and lithography, it is a joy to discover a new generation of younger artists working in Swansea and using old techniques to give voice to new ideas and points of view. I have not been back to the Central School for years and I suspect that its printmaking department is now a computerised shadow of its former self, but in Workshops like Swansea artists can encounter again the unique romance of presses, hand made papers, woodblocks, inks, tools and rollers that add an incomparable magic to the process of artistic expression.
Swansea: January 2007
Sameera Khan, Swansea Print Workshop Studio Manager talking to the Pakistani media.