February 25, 2020

Leafless Trees

        I wanted to share these two linoleum block prints by Anita Laurence (Australia) before we enter spring.  I did a post in the past with her images of cities, which are delightfully busy.  These leafless trees are very different.  In terms of actual carving, these are also very busy: the branches and their shadows fill the space with detail and everything is full of interesting textures.  By contrast, however, the over-all impression is of space.  There are hills in the backgrounds, but the foreground is flat and stark, and the skies are large even though they don’t really fill much of the paper.  Clearly with such strong shadows, the sun is bright, but perhaps it’s the buff paper and heavy cloud cover at the horizon that make it feel hazy.
        These landscapes are from the western part of Victoria, which is one of the areas that’s been badly affected by fires this year.  This is not the first time there have been
fires, of course, and Laurence has apparently done some artwork (photography) relating to brushfires in the past, but I don’t know what the current status of these areas is, or whether Laurence is currently dealing with it in new work.
        In any case, these are beautiful, and I love the use of texture and light and shadow.  They do a lovely job at one of art’s important functions: to draw attention to the unique beauty of individual locations, and to share that attention universally.

[Pictures: Winter I, linocut by Anita Laurence,
c 2012;
Typo Station, linocut by Laurence
(Images from AnitaLaurence.com).]