My 2023 Artweeks exhibition is inspired by beautiful British Wildlife; our countryside, gardens, creatures and the changing seasons.
I have loved the countryside for as long as I can remember; wild flowers and weeds, animals, birds and insects.
My exhibition is a celebration of these in the medium of linocut.
Throughout the year I’m busy making prints, showing, selling and teaching.
Please do have a look at my website, Instagram or facebook for all my up-to-date events.
Gerry Coles OAS
I discovered Linocut Printmaking quite late on in life compared to most people I talk to, who seem to have dabbled at school.
My education was seriously lacking in that respect - maybe I just went to the sort of school where they didn't willingly give the kids sharp tools.
I enjoyed painting and drawing very much as a child and although I studied Art up to A level, there I stopped.
Life intervened and somehow, something I loved became something I never did.
The seeds of change were sown when I visited the Victoria gallery in Bath a few years ago and saw and exhibition of wonderful relief prints which made me want to rush off and try for myself. To paraphrase Mark Twain - "I never let schooling interfere with my education" so I bought myself a small kit and I started to teach myself how to carve and print with Lino. I was hooked. Although largely self taught, I love to develop my skills and I regularly seek out workshops to update and improve my techniques, and broaden my knowledge
Nearly all my prints are reduction prints: a single Lino block is carved “reduced” in stages and the colours are printed over each other in layers from each carved stage.
I enjoy the challenge of rendering a picture using bold shapes and a limited number of colours. I aim for a mix of a strong, almost geometric style whilst retaining a degree of botanical or physical accuracy for the subject. I relish the combination of artistry, technical challenge and luck that is needed to produce a print, and I’m constantly in awe of what is revealed when the paper is peeled back from the block.
After two successful entries in their Open Exhibitions, I was invited to become a member of Oxford Art Society in 2019.
I took part in Artweeks in a group at Chalgrove in 2018 and 2019, online in 2020 and solo shows in 2021 and 2022. I enjoy exhibiting at local exhibitions throughout South Oxfordshire, including Thame Art crawl. One of my prints “Christmas in the Covered Market” was selected to be included in the Oxford Art Book published in 2018 and another of my prints "Historic Oxford" is now licensed for use as a postcard for guests, by the Randolph Hotel Oxford.
My striking and colourful linocuts also make excellent images for greetings cards. I now have nearly 70 designs professionally made into beautiful cards using recycled cardstock.
I regularly teach linocut workshops (find them in the Workshops section of the Artweeks site and on my own website)
I exhibit and sell at local art shows and sell online though ETSY and ARTFINDER, in the UK and internationally.
I’m always very happy to answer any queries or chat about my printmaking so don’t hesitate to get in touch.