Amanda Caldwell

Amanda was born, grew up, and currently resides in  St. Thomas, Ontario. She has always been drawn to  creative endeavours and fell in love with printmaking  while attending the University of Western Ontario,  from which she graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Art degree in Visual Arts, and a Graduate Diploma in Arts Management. She has been building her body of  work by creating limited-edition multi-colour relief  prints using mainly linocuts for the past ten years. She  continues to print through the partnership she has enjoyed with  the Riverside Print Group from  Cambridge, Ontario, who have generously allowed her  access to their printing press.

Amanda considers her art-making process to be one of both deconstruction and reconstruction of landscape spaces. The design process divides the landscape into shapes but the printing process rebuilds the landscape through the layering of colour. This creates something familiar but precarious, as nature is, and comments on the beauty and destruction of natural spaces. For her, the printmaking process is symbolic: as many of these places are being destroyed, her art-making process allows her to put them back together, building them piece by piece. But there is always the moment of realization that the reconstruction is symbolic, and in reality all we have left are these reconstructed images and not reconstructed spaces.

What is Relief Printmaking?

Using knives and gouges, the artist cuts away lines and areas from a linoleum block. The artist rolls ink onto the block and the ink adheres only to the surface, skipping over the cut-away areas. To print, the artist places paper over the inked block and applies pressure with a printing press, transferring the ink to the paper. The print is a mirror image of the marks on the block. The block can be printed as many times as the artist chooses. To print the next colour, the artist cuts away more of the linoleum block and repeats the inking and printing process, printing directly on top of the first colour printed. This process of cutting, inking and printing can be repeated many times to achieve multi-coloured relief prints. Depending on the number of times the artist prints the block, an edition of prints is created and numbered (eg. 1/6), but still all prints in the edition are original and hand-made.