Process Residency

Vanessa Donoso Lopez
Black Church Process resident 2019/2020

Black Church Process is a Studio initiative that invites leading art practitioners from other art disciplines to work with the resources of the print studio. This programme offers an insight into the potential of printmaking while promoting and positioning it within contemporary art practice. The projects are intended to be an exploratory process, initiated by the artist’s vision, and facilitated by the skills and experience of a dedicated printmaking team of master printmakers and print coordinators. Artists are encouraged to explore the various possibilities that printmaking present to them. The collaboration between artist and studio aims to give the practitioner a comprehensive understanding of the processes and concepts of this art form and to lead to new and exciting directions in their practice.

Vanessa Donoso Lopez
Black Church Process resident 2019/2020

Previous residents

Niamh McCann

Master Printmakers: Janine Davidson & David McGinn


Niamh McCann Profile pic
From the Artist

Testimonial coming soon!

The process – We took two sheets of 5251 aluminium and created a photoetching on each piece, which was subsequently etched. This part of the project was overseen by Janine Davidson. These etched plates were then layered with a screenprint layer using acrylic inks. Then Niamh McCann took the plates to her studio and worked them up further with layers of paint. After the paint dried, the plates were again screen printed with acrylic inks over the painted sections. The screenprint aspect of the project was overseen by myself. The finished works are textural in nature, built up on the aluminium plate. Each work is unique. – David McGinn, Technical Studio Manager.

Vanessa Donoso Lopez

Master Printmaker: Louise Peat

From the Artist
This invitation has been giving me a chance to look at my work from a completely different perspective and experience. Although the process has not reached its final state, so far, this collaboration has helped me to experiment with new ways of using the materials I normally use and to think in a different and new dimension being able to construct a completely new body of work with surprising and unexpected results.

This has been possible with the help of their technician David and the collaboration of the Master printmaker and member artist Louise Peat, whom has been assisting/collaborating with me since the first day I started to use the facilities. Louise has generously shared her conceptual and practical knowledge on the techniques, and the work being experimented in Black Church Print Studio couldn’t have happen without her support.

Caoimhe Kilfeather

Master Printmaker: Alison Pilkington

From the Artist
The invitation to work under the ‘Process’ programme is a really great opportunity for me. Print is an area that is of much interest to me and something I have used in various forms over the years. However I have not had such sustained access to the facilities and expertise before. For me this will be an opportunity to explore an aspect of image making that is very new in the context of my work – namely how the abstract aspects of my sculptural work can be further explored. I have begun to use lithography and wood cut and this is already creating some new direction in my work.

Dan Shipsides

Master Printmaker: David McGinn

Isabel Nolan

Master Printmaker: Louise Peat

From the Artist
T-shirts with bleeding, woozy colour-photographs; agitated political or pop slogans; Vorticist woodcuts; pre-photographic illustrations of astronomical phenomenon: comets, sun spots, auroras comprised of exquisitely hatched lines; or diagrams depicting the structure of the cosmos. This is my extemporaneous idea of print. Print is also a means of ramping up production. But repetition to what end – is more, better? Disregarding virtual means of dissemination, even in the time of the photocopier / digital printer a handmade print is perverse choice for spreading the word. Maybe it is not the medium for a manifesto. An etched line is beautiful in print. So much so it is ticklish, risky even; it elevates a most ordinary sketch into something with inky depths, gravity and precision. I remember this from a short print block during undergrad, and wonder if such tractable beauty can be trusted in the hands of an amateur? Other processes are totally unfamiliar to me and at the beginning of this ‘Process’ I’m taken aback by the range of available methods, each rich in potential. I’m beginning by simply wondering how print might in some way be (a part of) a sculpture. It seems that copper sulphate bites into aluminium with a fizzing, dirty exactness; and the range of materials that can be printed upon is extensive. I’m not anticipating acquiring amazing technical skills, but rather a giddy acquaintance with serious possibility.

Sarah Pierce

Master Printmaker: Janine Davidson

From the Artist
‘My dear Betty, It has been very remiss of me not to have written to you before now, to offer my congratulations on your engagement. I was away and you were away and there was no immediate hurry, and I always put off everything…’ The letter continues, woven with affection and good humour by a mentor who clearly holds his student Betty in high esteem. His fondness is palpable. It underlines the jests about getting married (a fate befallen to ‘pretty girls’) and abandoning painting for a new life. But beneath the gentle tease is an undertone of regret – not for what could have been, but for a future that will be where Betty Webb has given up being an artist. Donal Maguire, curator and Administrator of the ESB Centre for the Study of Irish Art at the National Gallery of Ireland, where the letter is now kept, showed it to me as part of my general research into the Irish canon.

After her death, her sons handed the letter over to the National Gallery, together with a few sheets of negatives that document the paintings Webb made in her lifetime. Workmen, sailors, still lifes, a donkey, portraits of family members – father, husband, children, grandchildren. So she did not abandon art, not entirely. Although the historical status of the letter’s author is primarily why the National Gallery acquired Webb’s effects, the assimilation of her papers into the archive brought an unexpected story about the ordinariness of being an artist. For my print with Black Church Print Studio we have received permission from the Webb family to reproduce the letter as an etching, along with an inverse digital print of a negative from the file that reveals a portrait of Webb as an art student, and a present day photograph of the file in context. The prints form a portfolio that will be deposited in the CSIA archive where it will exist for posterity
alongside the originals.

* The Betty Webb file, courtesy of the Centre for the Study of Irish Art at the National
Gallery of Ireland.

* The sound element for Sarah Pierce’s work was commissioned by Sven Anderson for
Continuous Drift (2014), a project initiated as part of the Dublin City Public Art Programme.

Brian Fay

Master Printmaker: Debora Ando

From the Artist
Working as part of the Process initiative afforded me the opportunity to collaborate with those who have great expertise and experience of techniques in a variety of printing processes. I had not used analogue printing processes as part of my practice, even though I have long thought that a process like etching would be very relevant. On meeting with Black Church Print Studio we discussed the potential of drypoint as a form that equates readily with drawing, which is the main activity in my practice. This form of print is manual, it involves different stages of image production, as the sheets of copper used are physically marked and scored. For Black Church Process I used an infrared photographic image from Johannes Vermeer’s painting Young Woman with a Water Pitcher c. 1664-65. The idea is to equate the 10 infra-red plates with 10 drawn copper drypoint plates and print them in a non-chronological sequence, across 11 sheets of paper. As each plate is used to print and reprint the sections of the overall image, the drawn line on the plate gradually begins to deteriorate. This role of entropy within the process of producing the sequence has subsequently become of interest to my work. The drypoint series presents a framework for the reflection on the role that time and technology plays in mediating our understanding of image creation, the preservation of the image’s unstable form, and a making visible of its own history.

Damien Flood

Master Printmaker: Mary A. Fitzgerald

From the Artist
My work is grounded in early writings on philosophy, theology, alchemy and the natural sciences and explores the mutability of ‘reality’ and language. Working with the Black Church Print Studio gave me the chance to re-examine my working process. I normally work intuitively, reacting to each layer I apply on the canvas. In this way there is no blueprint for the work. I also normally work on between 10 and 15 works, allowing each work to respond or inform another. This way of working I quickly learned was at odds with print. Working in a different medium is always a challenge; the chances of failure are much higher. This is one of the main reasons I was attracted to the project. I believe the closer you come to failure, the closer you get to something new and exciting. For the project I was forced to plan more methodically, which led to an examination of how I work and create my paintings. With the prints I was creating I could no longer simply erase the last layer or cover it over. This led me to look at the basics of image making and start working on a series of drawings that would become finished prints. The work I ended up producing took the form of drypoints. This was a quicker and more direct way for me to create an image. During the inking process the plates were rubbed back roughly and in a painterly manner, making each edition slightly different. Three sets were produced in the end, with 6 prints in each. Watercolours were used on one set, which added a different mood and feel to them. I see these prints as illustrations to a story yet to be written, of places constantly in flux.

Jesse Jones

Master Printmaker: Raymond Henshaw

From the Artist
The Process project was great opportunity for me to broaden my practice materially. As an artist working in film I had used print only briefly while making props for a film work in 2011 called Against the Realm of the Absolute. This was my first encounter with Black Church Print Studio. The printed props were a way to make a specific object for the film but I really enjoyed the process and how the practice attends to the image in a slow methodical way by breaking it in to systems and layers. For the Process project I created a work that was a companion piece to a film work exhibited in the Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane in 2012. The print was intended to read as an expanded frame from the film within the gallery space. I worked with Ray Henshaw to create the work, which was a large silkscreen print on various pieces of glass and mirror. The image was a flash frame from the film ‘The Predicament of Man’ so the print allowed me to give this image an emphasis in the exhibition that would I hope some how resonate the film.


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