michael's goofy face hereMichael Babinski

Artist's Statement

My relief printmaking is one of the diverse ways I express myself. What I like about linocut is the way the process imposes itself on the design. In the past, doing paintings, I believed my work to be too realistic and photographic, but adapting to linocut forced a less literal design mode. I also enjoy the process itself: carving the linoleum, inking and printing. Many of my linocuts are then colored with watercolor, but sometimes the black and white image asks to stand alone.

My imagery is varied. Many pieces are mythopoeic, sometimes obviously, others in a more subtle way. Certainly standing stones and antlered dancers are images that speak a language of the spirit, but other motifs are not always so apparent. Crows and Ravens are used to represent transformative spirits, trees depicted to signify constancy and resonance with the Earth.

Other images refer to a kind of gritty nostalgia for things and places now forgotten. Romantic allusions to the things we use in everyday life and how they change as time redefines us.

Choosing and developing these motifs, and creating art in various media is an essential part of who I am; as necessary as breathing.

I refuse to label my works 1/200, etc., because I don't view the process as precisely controlled repetition. Yes, this is a printing form, but it is totally unlike the way a "print" is made commercially. I will experiment, and perhaps change aspects, such as color, each time I print. Maybe I will print and watercolor an image today, only to print in plain ink on handmade paper tomorrow.

My Studio Dedicated May 1, 2001

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