Ancient printmaking techniques on display at museum Saturday

Kids will have a chance to explore the art of stamp block and print making this weekend at the L&A County Museum.

Adam Prudhomme
Beaver Staff

The ancient art of stamp block and printmaking will be on display at this Saturday’s Museum Kids, held at the Lennox and Addington Museum and Archives.

Kyle Topping and Chrissy Poitras of the Picton-based Spark Box Studio will be on hand to lead the hands-on workshop, which is best suited for kids aged 4 and older.

“We’re going to walk them through the process of creating a hand-carved relief print using linoleum,” said Poitras. “We’ll have some samples on site of different ways to make relief prints with wood on different kinds of plates that they use in commercial printing and some samples of prints that have been done by different artists that have visited our residency. We’ll have some handmade pieces that we’ve made for prior workshops.”

Those in attendance will get an overview of the interesting history of block printing, which dates back to 500 B.C.

“It’s not a new process,” said Poitras. “The material that we use is new, but it’s something that dates back a very long time ago and was used for a lot of different industries. Mostly just artists use the old process now, like so many other things it’s not really that functional anymore for a western consumer sense. But then again, still a lot of textile designers in India use hand carved wood stamps to create their textiles.”

After the demonstration, participants will have the opportunity to try out some pre-made printing blocks and create small works of their own. It’s a simple enough process that once learned it could even be done at home.

Poitras says anyone interested in attending need only bring an open mind and all the rest of the materials will be provided at the museum.

The event, which gets underway at 10 a.m., is free of charge.

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