The skirting board still needs to be fitted but things are coming back into the room; I'm trying to keep the floor as clear as possible so that I can enjoy the sense of space that the new floor gives me.
Back at my desk, I am enjoying the little catalogue produced by the Library of Manchester Metropolitan University to accompany the current Society Of Wood Engravers Exhibition. This is from the MMU website:
The Best Tools, the Best Methods, the Best Aims... : The Society of Wood Engravers 1920 - 2012
16th January 2012 - 23rd March 2012
MMU Special Collections Gallery,
Sir Kenneth Green Library
"It is admittedly a time of experiment. We have to rediscover the best way of doing things - the best tools, the best methods, the best aims." Eric Gill, 1927
This exhibition celebrates the very generous donation by the Society of Wood Engravers (SWE) of their archive to the Manchester Metropolitan University Special Collections. The archive includes material from the Society's foundation in 1920 and traces its development up to the present day.
The exhibition includes material from the SWE archive along with examples of some of the finest 20th century wood engraving from our book collections and unique material from some of the artists' archives. In addition to showing the work of current members each has nominated a past member, who they regard as having been a particular inspiration to them; either through their work or more personally. The contemporary print has been displayed alongside a print by this 'sage'.
In depositing their archive with MMU Special Collections the SWE have ensured its long term preservation, as well as making this fascinating material available to those interested in the SWE illustrious past and its exciting future. They have also placed the archive alongside exceptional collections of books related to wood engraving and with the private papers of a number of artists who are recognised as being amongst the leading engravers of the 20th century.
By displaying the work of some of today's members alongside that of some of the key figures from the history of the SWE we hope to highlight both the continuities and also the developments in the art of wood engraving in this country through the 20th century and beyond and also to echo the words of Eric Gill in suggesting that this is still "a time of experiment".
I chose to be paired with Reynolds Stone, with whom I do feel a great affinity. For my own image, I chose the bookplate that I engraved for my wife to mark our 25th Wedding Anniversary:
The exhibition continues in Manchester until 23rd March