Julian Meredith Tuna

Julian Meredith. Extinction: 4 October - 2 November 19

 Julian Meredith Blue Fin

Julian Meredith, Extinction
4 October - 2 November 19

Julian Meredith’s work emanates from the natural world and references the critical environmental concerns which we are now facing, particularly the loss of habitat and extinction of species. His work depicts sea creatures, birds and other once commonplace animals whose numbers are now depleted.

Meredith's powerful life-sized prints, often printed in his signature Prussian blue ink, are cut and meticulously printed by hand from sawn planks of elm, stencilled on Japanese papers or printed directly from dead animals.   

I know that extinction is happening all around us, not because I have been told so, but because I grew up surrounded by an abundance of brown trout, bullheads, green plovers, eels, water voles and now I see almost none in what is a shrinking habitat. The kestrel that used to perch on our wires has gone and I have hardly heard a cuckoo this year.
My work emerged out of this abundance I experienced around me. Now it is an act of rebellion against the loss that surrounds us all. My hope is that my images help people understand the balance of Nature that is under our feet; I want them to be about the future, not the past. My fear is that, like my use of elm, my work will become a testimony to what once was: nature fossilized in wood, the paper waving like lost spirits. Let this not be so.

Julian Meredith Printing      Julian Meredith Printmaking       Julian Meredith IPB

Artist’s Information

Julian Meredith is a printmaker working mainly in woodcut as well as relief printing, creating images taken from large planks of wood and from objects which are found in the landscape in which he works; this could be from animals, feathers, fish etc. A proportion of Julian’s work is also site specific, being constructed or drawn directly on the landscape – fish, cetaceans and more ambiguous images, hundreds of feet long, some permanent and some drawn in sand and snow.

I have always had a deep respect for people who live and work in close connection with the natural world. My own work is an extension of my practical knowledge of aspects of the wild. For years I drew flowers, but it wasn’t until I started keeping bees that I began to understand them.
I gathered branches from dead elms and began making constructions, twenty feet or so across, and increasingly large prints. The printmaking process impregnates the wood with pigment and paraffin, giving it an almost fossil-like quality.
The prints that I take from the blocks have a light, airy quality, the opposite to the nature of the wood itself. As the printed paper comes up off the block it’s a bit like the spirit of the fossilized wood.

Northern Print has had the pleasure of working with Julian on several occasions over the last 25 years; the last time being in 2009 as part of International Print Biennale, when Julian did a residency in the Great Hall at Discovery Museum in Newcastle, gradually printing a life-sized woodcut of a whale!

Julian has shown his work nationally and internationally including in the UK, Spain and Japan. His work has won numerous awards and is held in many collections including the Victoria & Albert Museum; Natural History Museum, London and Cartwright Hall, Bradford.

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