I have from mid 2011 onwards made engravings, initially as separate pieces and subsequently mostly as elements in a series on a theme: Resistance Fighters WWII (Lino cuts) , "Traces" (copper), "Humiliation - Human Dignity" (copper), but then - among more recent work - some stand on their own again.
Introduction to the Theme 'Traces'
When I thought about what might be a trace and how to treat it in printmaking, the infinity of the subject matter gradually dawned on me.
Traces can be inorganic or organic, permanent or ephemeral, and everything in between. They may take forms perceptible with one of our 5 traditional senses, or several at a time. Or they may be imperceptible to humans, unless they use tools to detect or measure them, devise models to describe them, or yet they will become known only when one opens up to one's intuition, to energy.
Organic traces are of plant, animal or human origin. If they are of human origin, they may be voluntary or involuntary, made consciously or not, take concrete forms or exist only in the form of ideas, including thoughts about oneself, as on one's thinking. Of all these examples I tried to express its diversity in the choice of these five etchings.
Humiliation - Human Dignity Introduction
Back in 1998, in the UNHCR office in Hargeisa, Somaliland, met with Evelin Lindner. She did her research on the dynamics of humiliation as a factor at both personal and societal levels of promoting (further) violence and war. Obviously Somalia, Somaliland and Rwanda were the main focus of our discussions at the time. We stayed in touch. Evelin and her friends meanwhile founded “Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies” - http://www.humiliationstudies.org - a global trans-disciplinary network and fellowship of concerned academics, practitioners, activists, artists, and many others. The network aims to stimulate systemic change, globally and locally, to open space for dignity, for mutual respect and esteem to take root and grow. Its goal is ending humiliating practices, preventing new ones from arising, and fostering healing from humiliation cycles throughout the world.
When Evelin saw some of my work in 2014 she asked me whether I could do something on the theme “humiliation - human dignity”. Once I focussed on the subject I noticed humiliation much more often than before, in the behavior of individuals of all stripes, in misinformed collective behavior as well. This realization contributed to the making of this series of engravings. I could have made very many different choices and chose what resonated with me most. There are many more engravings burgeoning in my head, but - may be - it is time to move on, while for always, committed to the subject and likely to take it up in some form again.
Intro to Whitleblowers
The Following are pieces of work that don't fit a particular theme. Most of them are earlier work, but not all. Each has a specific text providing additional information as appropriate.
"A slight gravity"
Matter(s) to read, poetry to touch - 3rd exhibition of the Book of Artists and Editorial Creation: "A slight gravity" collective exhibition, "etchings and texts rub shoulders in space; each engraving responds to the theme, each text to an engraving. First meeting between the members of the Gaillard Group of Engravers and the writing workshop Les Bouilleurs de mots (MJC of Saint-Julien-en-Genevois) at the invitation of the Maison du Livre d’artistes, Lucinges.