I was brainstorming images for a woodcut to use for the upcoming USA/Latin American cultural exchange, Cornbread and Tortillas festival, and a friend suggested a parody of the iconic “American Gothic” painting by Grant Wood. I wanted to replace the farmer and his daughter with famous Mexicans. I chose Frida Kahlo for the daughter, because she is one of the most popular Mexican artists of all time. Despite having a handicap, she was an independent, strong woman, in a time that was not the norm. I chose to use Emiliano Zapata to represent the farmer, because he is one of the leaders of the Mexican Revolution. He fought to put an end to the exploitation of the poor, working, rural class (peasants).
I thought the blending of these three icons say a lot about my ideas about contemporary culture and cultural exchange. I was raised in the United States as an ‘army brat’, my idea of culture is that it is a living, evolving thing. Our country is made up of lots of different people and cultures that are constantly moving around and influencing each other. United States Culture is a blending of cultures – so is Mexico’s.
Here’s a short video of the printing of the woodcut:
For the first 6 weeks of 2019, I am planning a trip (cultural exchange) to Oaxaca, Mexico. Sales of this print will help with my expenses for the trip. Thank you/muchas gracias to everyone for supporting my work.
To celebrate the arrival of fall (wool season is right around the corner) I wanted to share my latest woodcut with you all. I have been working on larger (to me) woodcuts 13×20″ blocks on 20×24″ paper.
If you’d like to have one (and also support my work), you can order one below:
I’m working on a series of large, hand made woodcut prints. I and wanted to share my latest, “Flannery’s Dream” the video below shows some of the process in making it:
“Flannery’s Dream” is a Kentucky folk story about a fiddler who was challenged to play a tune that had never heard before. He exhausted all the tunes he knew–without succeeding, then fell asleep. In his dream, he saw a bear with a fiddle. The bear chased him while playing a tune. The next day, he remembered the tune, and won the challenge!!!
I love the tradition of the county fair, and 4H children’s livestock presentation in particular. When everything goes right, the competition reminds me of ballet with animals. When things go wrong…that’s a lot of fun to watch too!
Here’s my latest print to celebrate the awesome kids who work all year to show off their 4H projects at the county fair. It’s another big one 15″x22″. If you live in the USA and would like one for your collection, buy one, and i’ll even ship it to you for free!
For August’s ArtZINE, our theme is: Life Turns Full Circle. We are celebrating a full year of visiting different small towns and collaborating with local and visiting artists. I have enjoyed exploring the different small towns, but my favorite part of the project are the new friends I have made while visitng their communities. We are meeting August 30th in Warsaw, KY. You are welcome to join us. You can learn more about ArtZINE here:
For my entry, I decided to carve a woodcut poster. I haven’t carved a woodcut this size before, but once I settled into the rhythm of carving, it went smooth. Here are some photos and videos of the process:
I have wanted to start making something that is big, affordable, and still original art, crafted by my hands (not gliclees or reproductions). I know a lot of people who love original art, and have big spaces on their walls, but they don’t have a big art budget. I think that woodcut posters could be the perfect solution.
I am printing this woodcut on a heavyweight, acid free 100% cotton paper. The artwork is 12 1/2″x20″ The paper is 15″x22″
The posters are signed, but not limited or numbered; which lets me get the price down to $60. I’m still going to offer free shipping in the USA, however, the art will be rolled in a tube, instead of mailed flat.
If you are familiar with my work, you know that this is a great price for one of my woodcuts at this size. If I get a good response from this poster, I hope to be able to create more soon. Thanks everyone for supporting my work!
I live on US Route 62, and have an idea of a project where I explore the road from end (Niagara falls, Canada) to end (ciudad Juarez, México) this weekend, I took my first trip along the Highway (to Grove city, oh) this is an old highway, and there is a lot of nostalgia from when this was a main road, so and I thought the perfect first linocut for this project would be Skip’s garage in Russellville.
If you’d like one of the linocuts, I’m selling them for $20 (free shipping to the USA) to raise money for more travel along US Route 62
4 1/2″ x 6″ hand carved block prints printed on a 8×10″ sheet of printmaking paper, signed by the artist.
Using an old-fashioned etching press, this is a hand printed work of art, and there is some variety in each print, yours may differ slightly from the photo.
If you watch my newsletter, social media or website, you probably know that I have been working on a new series of woodcuts. I’m excited to announce that they are, now available in my website’s gallery!!!
Some are complex limited edition reduction prints (with 9-12 different colors).
Others: simple 2 block/2 color prints.
If you’d like me to send you one for your art collection, I’ll pay the shipping (as long as you live in the USA), just click any of the images for more details.
Yesterday was Print Day In May. To celebrate, I invited friends to my home/studio for an afternoon of printmaking.
I made this woodcut of a sheep in the stars
It’s 4 1/2″x6″, printed on an 8×10″ paper-signed by Ken Swinson
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Ken is a self-taught artist from rural Kentucky, whose work includes painting, printmaking, animation and ipad art. He considers himself to be a 'lifetime learner' and he uses art as the vehicle to explore and learn more about the world around him. Much of his work reflect his optimistic views on rural folk culture, river life and simple pleasures.
You can visit Ken every Final Friday of the month at studio 400 at the Pendleton Art Center in downtown Cincinnati. He can also be found picnicking near his home in the Historic Village of Old Washington, KY.