My First attempt at Lino Cutting...

About a week ago I visited the Hannah  Höch exhibition at Whitechapel Gallery, a german artist well known for her thought-provoking and often humorous collages. 

I enjoyed seeing the range of her work,from her early embroidery and fabric designs for illustrated publications like 'The Lady'  to photo montages completed just before she died. 

I also loved her opinions of embroidery as an art form:

"Embroidery is very closely related to painting. It is constantly changing, with every new style each epoch brings. It is an art and ought to be treated like one.."

I was also really inspired by her earlier work of lino prints and lino print collages, so straight after the exhibition I went to an incredible art warehouse just off Brick Lane and impulsively bought a piece of lino and a cutter. Never having done lino cutting before I didn't know what to really expect apart from the ominous advice of "Be careful of your hands..."

I wanted my first lino cut to be special but also not too complicated, so I decided to design a print of my hand, almost like a self portrait and a bit of a challenge. I drew an image of my hand directly onto the lino and then began the first line of cutting... and realised it wasn't going to be as smooth as I initially thought!  Sitting in the garden surrounded by bird,  cutting lino was a really lovely experience, something I'll definitely be doing a lot of over summer. 

After a few hours of cutting, my hand resembled a claw, faintly reminiscent of Jim Carrey's 'The Claaaaaaaaaaaaaaaw" in Liar Liar.  However I was quite impressed with the result  and eagerly anticipated the actual printing process...

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I'm quite happy with the result, some of the detailing has been a bit lost which might be down the the size of the cuts or the amount of ink I've used. But it's a good start and I can't wait to keep making more!