‘The elements carved from lino or wood come together as parts of a larger story – some things stay, others disappear and reappear anew. I have endeavoured to capture that all things pass and that nature is capable, adaptable and able to regenerate into something beautiful and divergent.’
– Dianne Fogwell, 2020
We are incredibly excited to have recently received a series of new linocut and woodcut, works on paper by Canberra-based artist, Dianne Fogwell. An extensive collection of these ethereal works will feature in Dianne’s future solo exhibition, ‘Transience,’ in Melbourne.
Dianne is one of the most respected printmakers and artists book practitioners in Australia. She has been a master printer, and founding director of print studios such as Studio One, Criterion Fine Art Press and Gallery and Lewis Editions.
Dianne’s beautiful new series of linocut and woodcut works on paper are available to view online in the Stock Room gallery. Click here to view more.
In the following blog post, Dianne reflects on her recent work which draws upon her research into the devastation wrought by natural and unnatural fires on the Australian landscape. Featured throughout the post are images of Dianne working on her recent work, Together alone, as well as detailed images of her panoramic work, Arcadia lost. ‘2019 was the tenth anniversary of ‘Black Saturday’ Australia’s deadliest fire. Survivors speak of “being in a war zone,” the noise, the smell, the speed of destruction and the helplessness. “Black Saturday” was an inferno of destruction causing 173 deaths, 2,000 lost homes, left 7,500 homeless, burnt 4000,000 hectares and killed around 1,000,000 animals.
We cry for damage, loss of flora and fauna, donate money and time but still history repeats and I ask myself what have we learnt?This past summer of unprecedented destruction and of being captive to the smoke over Canberra has brought these investigations into a new realm of contemplation for me. Being closed in by smoke so far from the fire line reminds that there is more land than people and forest that is not and never has been empty.
Kilometres from the devastation of the fire line, the haze and unburnt particles that quietly laid a blanket of smoke over Canberra were ghostly indicators of the turmoil wrought by the fires. These elements made me contemplate the strength and fragility of the materials I use and the images I create. There is an irony to making images about fire, smoke and water – the natural enemies of works on paper, when paper is the essential material of your practice.‘Arcadia Lost’ is a mediation on damage and loss – about the loss of our harmony with nature; the loss of the idea that the forest and land is still always out there waiting for a simple walk in the bush; the loss of the idea that the Australian bush is eternal and invincible. It is a reminder of familiar words, “her beauty and her terror,” that aptly describe how I understand the Australian landscape. In this way the work calls us to strengthen our resolve, do more for our eco-system and enact workable solutions to regenerate both spirit and place.’
Last year, Dianne was featured in the UK magazine, ‘Printmaking Today,’ in an interview with Nan Mulder.
‘Before, during, after Fogwell seeks to understand not only the moment of destruction, but also the time before and after it. She tries to enter that world on fire, and places herself in the position of the tree, of the bird that loses its habitat, of the insect-ridden earth, which is suffocating under a dust clouds that covers it like a blanket. Her prints of the following year show that moment in nature just before the fire destroys it all. In the huge linocut Portent, birds scatter in panic, while the trees lose their colour. On the left of the print, the ominous sign of things to come is visible in the form of the growing dust clouds of loose topsoil, which are sometimes seen the day before a bushfire.’ – Nan Mulder, 2019.
To view the full article, click here.