In January, I traveled to Miami and was able to experience a Wynwood Arts District Second Saturday Art Walk. It was amazing to see the crowds, the seemingly endless number of galleries to visit, countless restaurants, the football-field sized food truck court and to be one of the “older” people in attendance.
At one of the galleries, I discovered the work of John Buck.
John Buck is both a sculptor and a printmaker. He works with two interrelated bodies of work: carved wood, assemblage and bronze sculptures, and large, multicolored woodblock prints in collaboration with master printmaker Bud Shark. Using a pen, a nail or his fingernail, Buck incises the wood planks that form the base and background of his prints with images and symbols drawn from the daily news, from his own sculpture and from nature. Embedded in this active visual field is a large, carved image, often a figure, but he has also depicted a jar full of fireflies, an eagle, or a subtly colored moth. The relationship between these two elements first engages the viewer in an appreciation of the beauty of the graphic quality in the print and then begins a conversation about our world and our place in it. (Biographic information from Shark’s Ink website.)
I stood in front of Fact and Fiction for what seemed like hours. When Doug and his daughter Cassidy eventually found me, said, it looks like work that you make. They were responding to the way Buck uses the outline form of the figure, which I use in many of my collages and daily drawings, as well as in some of my printmaking. For example the Solid Sound Seven:
And now more recently, this series of seven prints recently completed while at the Wells Summer Book Arts Institute.
I’m calling this series Waxing My Third Eye. I love the sensation of having that space between my eyebrows, the third eye, waxed. There’s something about it that frees up energy in my body. I invite you to meditate on this series and consider all the different ways that women “remove” and “add” things from/to their bodies. From waxing to pregnancy to surgeries and all kinds of other things.
This series of prints utilized some of the incredible letterpress cuts in the Wells collection plus using pressure print matrixes on figure forms.