Catherine Ade Somerset, United Kingdom
I am an artist, freelance lithographer at The Curwen Studio and have my own studio, The Lemonade Press where I teach lithography, grain lithographic plates for other studios and operate an open access membership scheme.
My work is a means to reveal the private experiences and spaces surrounding me, building a tableau vivant. The use of light and the constructions of space play an important role in creating mood and invite the viewer to look into a private world.
I collect information and create my own archive using a series of data-gathering exercises which are inspired by Mass Observation; guided by this material I create new scenes out of collected memories, some my own and some borrowed. I record memories using photographs, drawings and written quotes. These are collected from social observation. Being present of mind to record the mundane and everyday rituals that play a vital role in our lives and ultimately reflect who we are.
Guided by these collected memories I create new scenes that blur the boundaries of fiction and reality.
I use the labour-intensive medium of lithography to reconstruct these events to recall and absorb them. By drawing directly on to the plate or stone I can focus on these transient memories; transforming them and giving them permanence and solidity through the printing process.
Materials are key. Litho crayon and tusche wash record the spontaneity of drawing but have their own unique appearance. As tusche settles and dries it follows the movement of the hand that applied it and serves as a record of a moment past. The processes of printmaking are a natural step in the development of my work and I enjoy playing with transparent colour overlays in lithography; building and blending colours to create mood and depth.
Since completing the MA in 2014 I began working as a collaborative lithographic printmaker at The Curwen Studio, London. I have gained a wealth of experience making collaborative lithographs with artists. The role demands exceptionally high standards and close attention to detail. Gaining improved technical abilities has fed directly into my own practice and I have been able to explore how to use these skills within my own lithographs. In 2019 I was lucky to receive a place at The Tamarind Institue for lithography summer workshop. I spent a month focussing on learning new skills and making new works. My time at Tamarind in the USA and also renting my own studio on my return to the UK has been supported with funding from The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation.