Friday, August 31, 2012

Staff Pick- Susan Jaworski Stranc

We picked up a new artist, Susan Stranc in May. Her medium is linoleum block prints and more specifically reduction linoleum block prints. That means for each color in the print she carves a bit more of the linoleum away to create the final image. This requires a lot of planning as once the linoleum has been altered (carved away) there is no turning back. It also means that there are usually prints that don't make it all the way to the final color as mistakes happen. Technically quite challenging and a different way of the artist interacting with the paper.

It isn't the technical aspects of Susan's work that engage me though. Her color choices are absolutely seductive. She has an ability to combine  vivid colors without creating visual mayhem. That is not as easy as it sounds- especially as each cell of color can be quite small. There is a risk that it will be read as a pattern rather than light, shadow or volume.

Susan also uses inks which are quite viscous and glossy. That means that there is a certain amount of dimension to the ink- it stands up off the paper. The glossiness only enhances the textile-like feeling. This interplay of pattern, surface, tactility and image is very appealing to me. I stare in amazement each time I look at her prints. Come in and see for yourself.

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