Fleece Press ~ England
(Simon Lawrence)

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Fleece Press has published a series regarding the work and engravings of John Buckland Wright.

Christopher Buckland Wright: "In the 1930's, 1940's and early 1950's three artists did a great deal to launch British engraving into the exciting waters of contemporary European art: the New Zealander John Buckland Wright and two Englishmen William Hayter and Anthony Gross. They all had French attachments and were quite independent of the influences of earlier and highly successful schools of British engraving. Buckland Wright helped Hayter to found his famous Atelier 17 in Paris. At this workshop, in which artists experimented at novel methods of printmaking, JBW (as became known by his initials) worked with artists such as Matisse, Chagall, Picasso, Miró, Dali. Later when teaching at the Camberwell and Slade Schools of Art, he was able to communicate to his pupils his experience of how these artists worked.

"JBW's work is characterized by the portrayal of the sensuous nude, in which the female form is depicted with grace and charm. The source for his artistic expression has its origin in his experiences during the First World War. Having joined the Scottish Ambulance Service, he was seconded to the French Army at Verdun, the sector in which the French suffered the greatest devastation during the First World War. There he witnessed harrowing scenes of human devastation while rescuing wounded and dying men from the front line trenches. Following the war, JBW found relief in drawing the female figure that incorporated the romantic ideal of Greek philosophy into the very essence of the emotional expression of his work. Through his art he was able to come to terms with the horrors he had experienced during the war and to restore unity and tranquility to the devastated landscapes, to repair the damage that war had wrought on his love of nature. Once more he would fill his world with beauty of a timeless quality he had experienced in the gardens and countryside of New Zealand and England. He found his emotional renewal through his art. It was in this way that he was able to express his fundamental belief in the renewal of life and of the human spirit and to rediscover the joy he felt as a young man in nature's soothing beauty."


Endeavors & Experiments
By John Buckland Wright
West Yorkshire, England: Fleece Press, 2004. Edition of 300.

31.5 x 23cm, 71 pages. Bound using a patterned paper derived from an original design by the artist. This is one of 54 copies in the edition bound in quarter vellum, patterned paper over boards, in a drop-back box. Accompanied by a loose print of Cafe Dansant no. 2, laid in brown paper wrapper.

John Buckland Wright's essays in woodcut and colour engraving, together with other blocks remaining in his studio. The Fourth in a series of Fleece Press books on Wright's wood and copper engravings found in his studio at this death in 1954. This volume contains the 'free' or autonomous prints not published in the previous volumes, book illustrations, commercial work and designs for cards, announcements and publishers' marks. Included is a descriptive account of all the rejected and unfinished blocks in the studio.

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Fleece Press Out of Print Titles:
• Cats and Landladies' Husbands
• Inward Laugh
• Never Be a Bookseller
• Two Superiors

Page last update: 01.18.17


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