Impressions off the block

KATHMANDU: Twenty-two impressions were carved from a two-week woodcut printmaking workshop in March. And prints from these impressions off the wooden block on Nepali paper or India cartridge paper hang at the Park Gallery, Pulchowk at the exhibition titled ‘Off The Block’.

In vibrant colours or simple primary colours or black and white, the meticulously done compositions, the prints etch different themes that speak of the artists’ interests and inspirations — a chrysanthemum, a bird, portraits, innocent child, street lights, bear in 3D glass, et cetera.

These works have been put together by 22 students of Kathmandu University, School of Art, Centre for Art and Design. The workshop was a part of BFA IInd Year, Semester I course.

Hitesh Vaidya, 21, has captured the innocence of a child in ‘Enchanting Light’. The child in Newari attire is holding illuminative diyo in one hand, while a finger of another hand is playing around on the ground, unknown to her surroundings.

“I have tried to capture the innocence of a child — she is playing with fire which is considered dangerous,” he said. He is inspired by his culture and tries to explore it in his works — its elements are evident on the print through the attires and props.

Interested in wood carving as a child who used to imitate wood-carvers, the printmaking process was nostalgic for him. “The whole process was fun. I was curious about how it would turn out — the actual fun was in that,” he said. Flowing with the flow while exploring its techniques, he created his artwork that need “planning ahead on ideas and tones of colours, and patience along with expression”.

Twenty four-old Rupesh Man Singh bloomed a simple chrysanthemum flower giving off a Japanese vibe where printmaking is an age-old tradition.

Normally into painting and sketching, it was his first printmaking like most of the other workshop participants. And “it was like an experiment for us”.

In her first print Manika Manadhar, 21, made an impression of the connection of existence — earth, human and plants in ‘A Seed is Growing’. “It is simple and I am happy how it came out,” she shared.

A blue face and yellow hair against a red backdrop, Riya Dhungel’s face popped out in one of the prints. She took the inspiration from a badge with a face similar to hers, gifted to her by her friend. “I have covered many other topics for art pieces. So why not me?” she explained on why she decided to print her image at the exhibition where there is more art in prints.

The exhibition, which opened on June 10, is on till June 16.