Saturday, April 11, 2020

Someyhing To Look At: Deborah Vass

Deborah Vass is paints the most beautiful flower studies, and also produces fabulous linocuts, mostly of British birds. Her Instagram account is a pleasure to follow at any time, but I'm particularly enjoying it now whilst my time outside is so curtailed. I recommend her Twitter too if you're interested in wildlife at all.

Her website is best for looking at her paintings, but the Etsy shop is the place to go for the linocuts. I love these, at a very basic level because the strong graphic quality of bold black and white appeals to me anyway and I find these clean, uncluttered, prints really pleasing to look at. The subject matter also appeals to me. It's probably also worth mentioning that they're exceptionally good value, these are not major purchases.

The whole 'A picture paints a thousand words' thing might be a bit trite, but it's true, they can also evoke a whole host of memories from where to why you buy something. I gave a friend a raven print by Deborah because it had a Shakespeare quote ("the raven himself is hoarse" from Macbeth), we go to The RSC a lot together, and had been on holiday in Shetland where ravens are a sort of Up-Helly-Aa emblem. That symbolism, which brings up any number of happy memories, is entirely personal to us.

Sometime later she gave me another of Deborah's prints - this one a cormorant that lives on the Kitchen wall, I face it every time I sit at my kitchen table, and it too evokes happy holiday memories, and has also made me more observant of cormorants whenever I see them (as birds go I think only crows rival them for inky presence, and the ability to give great silhouettes).

Part of why I buy something is for the memories and associations it sparks in me, including artists who either see as I do, or teach me to look until I see as they do. When I look at Deborah's photographs she's teaching me to see details I might well have missed, which is why Instagram is such a brilliant thing sometimes.

1 comment:

  1. I have just discovered this and am so thrilled! Thank you very much indeed for such a lovely piece, what a tonic it is! x