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Richard Rowland: Vaila Fine Art exhibition 2016

Richard Rowland has worked from his studio on the Westside since 1998. His latest show at Vaila Fine Art contains prints from his travels in North America and other recent work.
Richard trained in London at the Sir John Cass Art School and at the Camden Institute, choosing to concentrate on etching since 1986. He has exhibited regularly, mainly at the Millinery Works and Vaila Fine Art, and at Bishop’s Square in London.

“I enjoy the combination of creation and craftsmanship involved in the time consuming process of etching.”

He uses the same techniques and materials as used by Rembrandt in the 17th century supplemented by aquatint later developed by etchers to create tone.

He works mainly in monotone, although some of his recent prints are in colour.

“I use traditional techniques, zinc plates and nitric acid to produce a range of contrasting tones, for which etching is celebrated. Colour is not naturally suited to traditional etching and requires a different approach, using rollers. Colour prints are much harder to edition, so I am showing them as monoprints.”

An example of this technique is “ On the Tracks-Manitoba” depicting the seemingly endless straight track of the Trans-Canadian express, through hundreds of acres of wheat fields, a journey of four days and three nights.

Another example-more whistful is “The Broad Illinois River“ a view of deck chairs waiting to be re-arranged on a classic paddle boat. And “Big Country-Montana” the largest piece in the show is an ambitious attempt to distill miles of wheat fields, badlands and mountains into one image. The train, called the Empire Builder, takes a day and a half to cross Montana.

To accompany the North American series, Vaila Fine Art has published Richard’s blog of his travels, called ‘A Short Blog on the Tracks” which is also being launched at the Private View.

“The Bod of Gremista under Snow” is a traditional monotone intaglio and aquatint using light, shade and reflection to depict the Textile Museum in the wintry Shetland landscape.

“Huxter Watermills” is reminiscent of summer days on the Westside, with white fluffy clouds over Papa Stour.