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A passion for printmaking; A selection of prints which go on show today at Swansea's Attic Gallery are the result of a diverse range of different hands-on printing techniques. Here we look at the three artists who are taking centre stage.

Byline: ARTS & CULTURE edited by Karen Price

WHILE the word "print" can refer to a mass-produced computer printout, the prints featured in the new show at Swansea's Attic Gallery are produced by hand using a variety of highly skilled techniques.

Some prints - such as Trevor Price's monoprints - are one-off images. A monoprint is made by inking a plate (often a sheet of glass or metal) then using a variety of tools, from cloth to needles and brushes, to remove areas of ink to create an image. The plate is then pressed onto a sheet of paper, transferring the image.

Other prints - such as Alan Williams' drypoint etchings - are made by drawing onto a copper plate with a diamond-tipped needle. The plate can then be inked and pressed onto paper time and time again, to produce a series of prints.

Whatever technique is used, a key point about the prints in this show is that each one is produced by hand.

"Original prints are not reproductions, they are original works of art created by the artist who is deliberately creating an effect that cannot be achieved any other way," says Attic Gallery director David Roe.

"The exhibition demonstrates the wide variety of techniques, styles and subjects that are covered by the term 'printmaker'."

Three Printmakers runs at Swansea's Attic Gallery from today to April 11 ALAN WILLIAMS Alan Williams discovered printmaking in the mid-1990s while studying graphic art at the University Of Wales. He was immediately drawn to the creative possibilities offered by the various print processes.

He says: "I use a range of techniques: woodcut, linocut, etching, drypoint, monotypes and collagraph.

"I tend to go in cycles, focusing mainly on one particular technique at a time."

For this show he has focused on monotypes, with a few drypoint etchings. A favourite theme is his home and garden - a series titled The Flight focuses on the housemartins which nest under his eaves.

He is also inspired by the Carmarthenshire landscape: Dryslwyn, the hill fort at Garn Goch, and the trees lining a well walked bridle path all feature in this show.

"Drawing underpins all of my work," he says. "When I'm feeling connected with my printmaking it becomes an expression of an internal experience rather than primarily a representation of a particular subject."

TREVOR PRICE Trevor Price works from studios in London and the coastal town of St Ives. He describes himself as an artist/printmaker.

"I love printmaking, and a lifetime of doing it has only wanted me to make more. Give me a lino cutting tool or a drypoint needle and I am happy," he says.

"Titles such as Love And Lust, Fine Wine, Fruit And Fish and Seadance hint at the themes of my work. I try to capture a sense of the joy of life, with an intimacy and a gentle erotic element - all mixed up with an occasional bottle of wine along the way."

His largest pictures in this exhibition are monoprints - bright, playful, one-off images that were made in a very spontaneous way.

"With thoughts of Matisse's dancers as my inspiration and loud dance music as company in the studio I throw caution to the wind and see what happens," he says.

JUDITH STROUD Swansea-based Judith Stroud was born in England spent her early years in Africa. After gaining a fine art degree at the West of England College of Art in Bristol, she moved to Wales and made a career in teaching art.

"My fascination with printmaking probably started when I was four, as I have vivid memories of playing with stamp-sized transfers," she says. "It's all about that magic moment when you lift up the paper and see what's underneath.

"I love every printmaking process and use them all, turn by turn, adapting them to suit my current interest. My exhibition at the Attic shows examples of many of these techniques. For example my interest in 'moku hanga' or Japanese-style wood block printmaking, with its use of delicate washes of water-colour, resulted in my prints of the Welsh Valleys."

Still Life With Lemon, monotype > The show also includes Judith's lino-cut prints of favourite buildings and places around Swansea and Gower.

CAPTION(S):

The Old Road Oaks, monotype

Fine Wine, Fruit And Fish, drypoint

Garn Goch, Southside, monotype

Raindance, drypoint <B

Langland Bay, Swansea, linocut

Still Life With Lemon, monotype <B
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Mar 21, 2015
Words:727
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