So many of our memories are intimately tied to the landscape. Printmaker Stephanie Jane Rampton’s landscapes recall the English countryside of her childhood, meticulously rendered in her Collingwood studio. In the following Q&A we speak to Stephanie about life during lock down, her artistic inspirations and her personal collection of art. The accompanying photographs offer behind the scenes insight into her home and studio.
HOW HAVE YOU BEEN SPENDING YOUR DAYS RECENTLY?
I’m a bit of a recluse so enforced isolation has merely legitimised my lifestyle, is it terrible to say I am enjoying lock down?
Mornings are generally spent preparing plates, drawing and etching. In the afternoon I’ll print any proofs or editions.
I also love to cook and have been doing a world tour of curries recently!
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE DISH THAT YOU’VE COOKED SO FAR DURING COVID-19?
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE ARTWORK IN YOUR PERSONAL COLLECTION? DOES IT HAVE A PARTICULAR SIGNIFICANCE/STORY?
I have so many!
A couple of years ago I bought two Norman Ackroyd prints in London. After leaving the gallery I saw him in a nearby cafe and couldn’t resist speaking to my hero. He was utterly charming!
My most recent purchase was a tiny August Carpenter monotype from Australian Galleries. It’s still being framed so I’m looking forward to adding it to the ever expanding collection.
The tree in Rembrandt’s The Omval has inspired and influenced me for many years.
I’m also obsessed with the British etchers of the 19th and early 20th centuries.
WHY THE DETAIL OF ETCHING AND WHY LANDSCAPE?
Well, I’m terrible at perspective and can’t draw people so landscape is the obvious choice!
Seriously, it’s because so many of our memories are tied to the landscape. For me it’s about nostalgia for the English countryside of my childhood.
Etching because it also evokes a sense of the past; using the same methods that have been unchanged for centuries.
Drawing with a fine needle onto the plate allows me to depict detail that I don’t think would be possible using a pencil. Adding aquatint for tone gives a softer contrast to the line work.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO DOING WHEN COVID-19 IS OVER?
Visiting Australian Galleries!!!
In the stock rooms
We have a wonderful new selection of Stephanie’s prints now available to view and purchase online. These lovely prints are unique in their delicate rendering of the rural landscape on a very small scale. Click here to view more.
Stephanie’s work is also featured in our current online exhibition, Casa; at home but still together.
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Daydreaming 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 3 x 8 cm
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Edge of the lake 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 5 x 10 cm
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Twilight 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 12 x 10 cm
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Over the hills and far away 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 5 x 5.5 cm
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Cow parsley 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 5 x 10 cm
Image above: Stephanie Jane Rampton Darebin 2020 etching and aquatint edition 10 5 x 3 cm
All photographs courtesy of the artist, Stephanie Jane Rampton.