études exists

Études, a press, now exists. I finally bought my first ten ISBNs. Wowzers. I'm officially a grown-up now. I've been thinking about doing this for about ten years now.

Études launches with my first publication… A Polychromy in Black: An Enchiridion. It's a publication documenting the process behind my Bideford Black: The Next Generation project.

More information will be available soon.


bideford black: printed shadows

And finally… all the tones: accumulated, layered, overprinted, repeated, cut up, collaged. All printed in my Bideford Black letterpress ink. These are one part of my larger work and will, in one variation or another, be appearing at the Bideford Black: The Next Generation show, starting at the Burton Art Gallery & Museum on October 3rd.


bideford black: trailer

The trailer for Bideford Black: The Next Generation is out!
The full-length feature film will be ready for the exhibition which starts October 3rd at Burton Art Gallery & Museum, Bideford.

Thank you Liberty Smith for all your hard work getting this together.


bideford black: dot dot dash, drawing, drawing, drawing

Tones and drawing on studio wall
Drawing Bideford-inspired tones
Drawing Bideford-inspired tones

Out with the pencil and drawing tones, inspired by samples of shadows, blacks, glooms and darknesses gathered whilst snooping round the archives at the Burton Art Gallery & Museum. It's amazing the array of techniques that artists have developed through paint, print and pencil to show shadow and form.


bideford black: making an ink to print on a press

Grinding Bideford Black

Mixing a Bideford Black letterpress ink

A jar of Bideford Black letterpress ink

Weeks and weeks of grinding and mixing, regrinding and testing to get an ink made of Bideford Black that dries quickly, doesn't smudge or transfer, sits well on paper and hopefully is relatively light-fast… Time will tell.


bideford black: of ink and tones

Tones gathered at Bideford Archive © Lizzie Ridout

Tones gathered at Burton Art Gallery & Museum © Lizzie Ridout

Start at the beginning…
Reading up on the wider cultural significance of black and particularly interested in black as ink. That's to say, the qualities of ink and how it's been used in history. Also as the sort of supporting hero in the bigger and hugely important story of the invention of the printing press. 

First stop, Bideford Archive to gather examples of blacks used as tones from old, local newspapers, followed by a similar process at the Burton Art Gallery & Museum, Bideford.


black list

Black is night skies, gloom, shadows, caves and dungeons; blackboards, witchcraft, chimneys, a punch-to-the-eye. It is negativity, formality, convention, sophistication and seduction. It is the printing press, pigment and photocopiers. It is earth, oil and dirt; life, death, mourning and melancholy. It is blackout curtains, a Claude glass and a camera obscura. It is darkness, the absence of light, all colours and yet no colours. It is a void, a deletion, a censorship, a secret, a mystery. It is the end. And it is the beginning.


tanks & tablecloths day out vol. I

Lizzy and I made a visit to the Holman's Test Mine at Camborne School of Mines to look at potential sites for our on-going Tanks & Tablecloths project. There's definitely scope for our film with their Nirex chamber  (see bottom image).


bideford black: the next generation

Delighted to have had my proposal selected for Bideford Black: The Next Generation, an ACE funded project. In association with The Burton Art Gallery & Museum and Flow.

Other artists include: Neville & Jean Gabie, Corinne Felgate, Luce Choules, ATOI, Tabatha Edwards, Sam Treadaway, and LittlewhiteheadFilmmaker Liberty Smith is commissioned to document each artist's project.

The first site visit presented a surprising and unusual landscape – and the beautiful seam of Bideford Black pigment.


independent school of art

Lizzy and I will be talking about the Tanks & Tablecloths project - both past works and future pieces - as part of the Independent School of Art's series of presentations. It takes place at St Gluvias Church Hall, Penryn on Thursday October 2nd at 7.30pm. All welcome.


time passes, things get done vol. ii

Diagram illustrating how to put up a WW2 Morrison steel table shelter, Ministry of Home Security
Happy to announce that the Tanks & Tablecloths collaboration returns, with new works anticipated for Plymouth History Festival in May 2015. Currently working on table tops and exploding books. Lots of musings and disconnected thoughts as things slowly take shape. It's very exciting to revisit these themes and get to work with Lizzy again. Collaboration really does shift the way that you work, and push you to create things that you may never have considered before.


time passes, things get done

It feels like ages since I posted anything up here. That's because it is. But contrary to how it may appear, things have been happening. The end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014 were mainly focussed on writing.  

Several peer-reviewed papers were published. I was particularly pleased with The Architecture of Conversation in Message: Mapping Eclecticism Through Practice (published 2013, by University of Plymouth Press) which was an epic to both write and design, as I tried to represent the temporal nature of the dialogue (various communications, events, emails and notes over an extended period) and the qualities inherent in conversation through a print-based version of an immersive text (if that's even possible). I'll get a pdf of it up on lizzie.ridout.com soon. A few pics above in the meantime - click to read.

A paper called Showing Saying: On Speech Balloons was also published in Semiotics & Visual Communication: Concepts & Practices (published 2014, Cambridge Scholarly Press).

More backwards gazing soon.


words take form

Look at this fella:

Kuya Shonin (Saint Kuya) by Kosho

Kuya Shonin (Saint Kuya) by Kosho

"Kosho’s St. Kuya shows the holy man in the act of recitation. In striking contrast to the realistic figural representation, the artist has added a more conceptual element to the work. The syllables of the nembutsu—namu Amida butsu (meaning 'Praise to Amida Buddha')—are given physical substance in form of six small buddhas that emerge from the statue’s mouth. Paradoxically, the contemporary viewer would have identified the figure not by his carefully rendered face (which could not have been based on Kuya’s actual features), but by the presence of these visualized syllables, along with his traveling attire and gong. In the context of the temple, the manifestation of the recitation serves other purposes as well. It both attests to Kuya’s own salvation and acts as a model for temple worshippers, allowing the saint to continue teaching even in death."
From here


thinking radio

Listening to the Open Air series of sound pieces on Radio 4, commissioned by Artangel's Open project and broadcast earlier this year.

At just 3 minutes long, I particularly enjoyed Christian Marclay and Ruth Ewan's pieces which reminded me of this previous post, about Murke's Collected Silences by Heinrich Böll, from this time last year.

And timely, when I'm reading this article Outloud by Steven Connor too.


tresses vol. iii

These sorts of photos remind you that the Victorians were real people too.
They mucked around with cameras and took silly photographs just like we do.
See more of that kind here.