PRINTMAKING was flipped on its head in Fremantle this week.
For the first time, the nationally-recognised Fremantle Print Awards featured a live performance, with skateboarder Fabien Zuffo Deschanps ollieing and flipping white paint across a vinyl “canvas” for 15 minutes in front of three judges.
The unique piece is the brainchild of Victorian artists Joel Gailer and Michael Meneghetti who collaborate under the banner Performprint.
Judge Anne Kircher, an arts consultant and curator, says it’s the first time she’s seen a live performance as part of a printmaking exhibition.
“It’s a very physical and active approach to mark-making.”
“It’s really expanded the idea of what a print is—the board could be a paintbrush—but it certainly leaves a mark,” she said after the performance.
Fellow judge Leigh Robb from Pica agrees: “It’s a very physical and active approach to mark-making.”
Deschanps’ wheels were carved so words associated with printmaking were revealed as he skated. He says despite the final image’s symmetrically chaotic nature, it was carefully controlled because the speed of his runs and spins affected how sharply the words were captured.
This week was the first time the 55 finalists in the awards had been brought together, and Dr Kircher says it continues the awards’ tradition of harking back to traditional print practices while pushing boundaries.
3D printing appears for the first time, but she expects as technology develops there’ll be a lot more in the future. There’s even some grass with dead patches, created by laying backyard objects on them, to really give notions of printmaking a challenge.
The prints now go back into storage until the official opening September 25.
The winner receives $15,000.
by STEVE GRANT