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The Making of Liebestod

June 2020
Work in progress,  Collaboration,  Film
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The Making of Liebestod, 2020, reduction woodcut, Part II I then drew out hundreds of star and galaxy constellations taken from Hubble’s deep space photographs on Nasa’s site. These approximations of interstellar clusters Helena, Jane, Jimmy and myself carved over several days in the studio. The idea being that what we chiselled out would, on inking up and printing, reveal tiny bits of painting underneath. We then mixed 17 different blues and printed the jigsawed pieces over the hand-painted backgrounds, hoping for a canopy of coloured marks appearing within a fan of space-blues concertinaing across the heavens : something that might convey their ardent wonderment…. But it wasn’t to be. The print doesn’t work: it’s way too blocky and formulaic. Too static. So after thinking about this for a day or two, I decided that the backgrounds needed to be much more random, and fight against the linear flatness of the printed blocks. So we have started again and are painting a whole series of zips, circles and spots, zigzags, stripes and grids. I hope this time that the cacophony of colour, mostly blocked out by surface printing, might create haloes of a magnetic field, in coloured patterns reminiscent of iron filing experiments from childhood, interspersed with a myriad of cosmic dots. We will post the results up if they work in a couple of weeks. Music playing while working in the print studio: Roy Ayers’ super funky The Black 5 from Mystic Voyage 1975 Music as inspiration for the image as a whole: Wagner’s Liebestod aria from Tristan und Isolde. do you not see? how he shines ever brighter. Star-haloed rising higher Do you not see? to drown, to founder – unconscious – utmost bliss! #royayers #mysticvoyage #theblack5 #tristanundisolde #liebestodaria #magneticfield #solarwind #hubblespacetelescope #deepspace

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