Kongla Ann at the Museum, 2017
Kongla Ann was created as part of a three-month artist residency at the Estonian Printing and Paper Museum in Tartu, 2017. These snaps capture the various stages of the print as Ann slowly came together over the course of the residency. Kongla Ann was a historical figure persecuted for witchcraft, including werewolfism, in Viru Nigula. Charges were brought against her by the lord of the local Pada manor, following the death of his child. Ann's outfit references the traditional folk costume from the Viru Nigula region, while the manor house can be seen in the background. The hound by her side alludes to witness accounts that she transformed into an invisible greyhound in order to enter the manor and wreak mischief. The curious shape beside her is based on the stone monument that was posthumously erected outside the Viru Nigula church grounds to commemorate Ann's 'martyrdom' in the face of Estonia's Christianisation by colonising powers. The protruding tail references local legends that werewolves would hide their wolf skins beneath large stones while in human form. Although originally from Sweden, she has ironically come to represent indigenous folk traditions and free thinking in the face of occupying cultures and regimes.
Click here for more on the historical figure behind the image.
Black-Breasted Buzzard was created for the Bimblebox 153 Birds project, initiated and curated by Jill Sampson. With contributions from over 460 writers, musicians and artists, the project offers a creative exploration of the bird species that inhabit the Bimblebox Nature Refuge.
Link to the official Bimblebox 153 Birds website here.
Togninas in the time of COVID
When COVID struck in 2020 and Melbourne (along with the rest of the world) was suddenly thrust into lockdown, I had to 'pivot' to teaching printmaking online to students who no longer had access to printmaking facilities or equipment. Unable to access my archive of teaching resources, I made some new collagraph plates from materials I had at hand for the purposes of testing and demonstrating the medium to my first year students - printing with a bone folder! Thankfully, we are back in the print studio and my subsequent demonstrations could take place using a press.
When, in 2022, I had to produce an edition for the 3rd year exchange portfolio, I decided it was time to put my collagraph editioning skills to the test by utilising my 'COVID' plates. I also thought it was about time I finally resolved the various demonstration prints I had begun since 2020, through overprinting with multiple collagraph plates and monoprinted flowers.
Click here to learn about Tognina Gonsalvus, the real life 16th-century hairy woman who inspired this work.
Jerboa Jerboa's enchantments cost most dear was created for the Entrancing Others exchange portfolio, curated by Rona Green and exhibited at the Gippsland Art Gallery in 2021, where it also entered the collection. The image was designed to work as two versions: a full version for a very limited edition; and a 'cropped' version for the exchange portfolio. The portrait of a two-headed were-thylacine draws on early modern woodblock illustrations of hairy wild women and monstrous dog-headed races, as well as the unkind cliché of Tasmanians having two heads. These studio snaps show Jerboa Jerboa in progress.
Click here to view the Entrancing Others catalogue
Click here to learn about the cinematic hirsute heroine who inspired Jerboa Jerboa
Girlie Werewolves in the making
Behind the scenes studio views of print portraits in progress