Shelley Burgoyne 14 May – 25 June 2016

shelley b 4 june

Venice Residency

This new series of prints includes etching, drypoint, collagraph and carborundum generated by a residency at the Venice School of Graphic Arts and Department of Micrology, exploring water from Venice canals.

"My research is a very exploratory and dreamy look at the life of the canals in Venice. I am fascinated by the elusiveness of the mysteries in the water here.  There is variety of water life in surprising abundance.

I spent time exploring and walking through the city and collecting water samples, focussed mainly on finding easy access to the water.  Surrounded by the stunning and overwhelming beauty of the city and its architecture, part of my fascination is to find what underlies the city.  Imagining a new foundation, or finding what is part of its foundation.  The water over centuries has had a dramatic effect on the sub structure of the city.

In Venice the canal waters are abundant with life.  It is not the first time I have investigated water.  Previous works have included working in Morecambe Bay, and collecting natural forms along the bed of the River Severn and comparing these with the Gloucester Cathedral structures.

I enjoy the intensity of looking down the microscopes – the thrill of finding the focus. Searching is important, following my instinct. I enjoy the abstraction of this enlarged microscopic, not always in focus, momentary and fleeting world.

The focussing is tricky. The water droplet in the slide is three dimensional – I am focussing through the depth as well as looking at an image that is moving with creatures within it. Changing the focus reveals another layer of plant and animal life. The image in focus changes and then is distorted, and then gone.

Working in the Department of Micrology at Venice University was hugely enjoyable. Stefano Polizzi and Davide Cristoferi were so generous with their time, made equipment available, and showed me the many possibilities of magnification.  Maybe in a small way I have influenced their views about the canal life too.  There were conversations reflecting on the compositional qualities of the images appearing within the framing of the camera.  Working as an artist in this science field I am searching in a new space.  Many questions follow."

You can find out more about Shelley Burgoyne and her work by visiting here website-