Residency in Staithes leads to exhibition

Gemma Lacey.
Gemma Lacey.
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An exhibition of work made during a week-long residency at Staithes Studios in December opens to the public today (Mar 1).

Seeking a sense of moving through and around Staithes, David Armes and Gemma Lacey established a daily routine – walk / take note / print.

Boulby, by David Armes.

Boulby, by David Armes.

Keeping to the working rhythm, plates and formes were set up quickly and editions printed each day.

Travelling to Staithes on public transport meant that tools and materials were kept to a minimum. Gemma brought foilcard drypoint plates that could be carried in a coat pocket and David used lightweight wooden and plastic type that could be set and hand-burnished without a press.

They had a wonderful time walking the landscape and wandering the streets of Staithes in a location where fishing, mining, tourism and agriculture meet.

They were delighted by textures of stone, cliff, cobble, sky, fields, hedgerow and sea defences, many of which found their way into the finished work.

Along the way there were plenty of breathtaking moments with dramatic light and surprise finds, like the old tunnel through the hill in the woods near Boulby mine.

The result is an exhibition using the traditional print techniques of intaglio and letterpress that takes inspiration from the landscape in and around Staithes.

Gemma is an artist born in Norfolk and now living in West Yorkshire.

She is driven by process and a desire to share physical and emotional responses to places and situations.

Primarily working in print, Gemma regularly shows work at artists’ book fairs and exhibits nationally.

David Armes is an artist working with letterpress printing, language and geography.

His work is frequently site-specific and considers how sense of place can be represented.

He uses hand-set type and overlaps the elemental rules of letterpress with more expressive approaches.

Gemma and David will be at Staithes Studios Gallery to talk about their work and answer questions on Sunday March 26.

The exhibition, under way today, is on until March 26. The studios are open Wednesdays to Sundays, 11am to 5pm. Visit http://staithesstudios.com for more.