98 Lb. WPBR Sculpture and Wood Block Print
Chestee envisioned a new technique during Christmas Holidays 1967, through unknowingly reinventing a very old technique, wood multicolored low carving. After doing her best to achieve texture applying thick paint and scraps of wood to canvas, here it was at last. The chisels were manipulated like drawing instrument and with the rich diverse bayou life subjects and her new technique, she was on fire.
Studio or plein air are both traditional techniques. Her plein air subjects are loose, by contrast, and are often more whimsical. “Getting outdoors with the easel to paint is as relaxed as drawing”, she says. Then there are those other images, the ones that come from inside as dreams, vision’s beckoning to find form in the studio...
Chestee created the first embossed drawing, while experimenting with various printing techniques. “I hoped to incorporate color in a different way into the embossing process.” A medal plate is formed from a wood relief, and then drawn onto with fingers, knives, brushes etc... Next, the plate and rag paper are run on a flatbed press.
The Italian painter Giovanni Castiglione is thought to have discovered the method in 1635 Rome. Today’s monotypes are done basically the same way, painting directly onto a smooth plate and transferring the wet image onto paper. Success requires a lot of planning ahead, solitary space and intense speed within a short time frame.
Originated in early 1700 Germany. Based on the repulsion between oil and water it was used artistically and for publication. The process consists of drawing or painting with greasy crayons on limestone or metal plates. Water and printing ink are applied successively; greasy parts repel the water and absorb the ink, wet parts do not.
An image is carved into a block of wood, then inked and transferred to paper creating a print. Prints are numbered, signed, block traditionally defaced to prevent reprinting. In lieu destroying the wood block and creating a work of its own Chestee first polychromed a printing block in 1997 similar to her signature medium.
First done in 15th century Italian. The burin a triangulated sharp steel point with wooden handle is pushed across the surface of a copper plate. Strong hands are needed to push and guide the tool creating thin furrows, which will take the ink and be printed. The edition is often small because of heavy press roller mashing the furrows.
* Around 1980 I did my first engraved a copper plate at the urging of my agent, a trust worthy man. My agent had it proofed for me at LSU. I later purchased my own press in 1985. The edition was never approved by me to be run, I have my working proofs only. We did not print the edition, agent died, I did my best to retrieve it from his family, I finally gave up feeling it was lost. It is a 5 X 7 copper engraving “French Quarter Street Scene”.
POLYCHROME FIRED CLAY or BRONZE Each bronze or clay piece is individually built, cast and fired in the artist studio. The piece is considered one original work of an edition. They are signed, numbered, fired and finished by the artist.
GARDEN SCULPTURE “Sculpture de Soleil” Fired clay or bronze The fired clay garden pieces are hand sculpted by the artist and cast manually with the help of an assistant in the studio. They are signed and numbered in the green clay before firing. Each work is polychromed by the artist
BRONZE Each bronze is cast using the time-proven lost wax method. To control quality and ensure the integrity of the edition, the wax copies are hand finished by the artist in the studio before being cast at the foundry. By special commission.
In a career that spans six decades, Chestee Harrington has created an extraordinary body of work that captures Louisiana's landscapes and cultures, its people and their stories. She describes her genre as "Spiritual Expressionism".
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One of our most popular reproduction prints. 9.5 X 6.5
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