The BGS motto – nil sine labore or nothing without work – is an apt description of the compelling, detailed and laborious work of relief printmaker Wayne Singleton.
Spend a moment with the feature artist at this year’s BGS Art Show Discover and you will also discover Singleton embodies the very characteristics BGS seeks to encourage: ‘Critical intelligence, imaginative and creative powers, effective communication, and the capacity and enthusiasm for independent, lifelong learning.’
Purchase your tickets to the BGS Art Show opening night Friday 21 August here.
View this year's catalogue here.
Singleton says he was “born hungry, selfish and curious. My parents looked after my hunger, contained and taught me to modify my selfishness, and vainly tried to focus my curiosity into the sciences.” Fortunately, Singleton was naturally good at maths and science and describes his aptitude as “the best training for my art”, explaining that he constantly “sees patterns and the relationships that occur between shapes”.
This ability to see physical elements in multiple dimensions makes relief printmaking a natural fit for Singleton. However, it’s clear that his powers of perception translate well beyond art into a life of great depth and detail.
In his studio, Singleton enters ‘into a world of inquiry, discovery, problem-solving, and creation’. He meticulously draws his composition in reverse on a linoleum relief block (the printing plate), using old-school pen-and-ink. The block is then cut by hand with various tools and – after up to 60 hours of cutting – a hand-operated press transfers the image from these ‘relief ’ prints pull ink from the surface of the block, whereas an etching or ‘intaglio’ print pulls ink from the excavations on a block.
After being cured and stacked flat under pressure, each print in an edition is coloured by hand, producing subtle variations between each original print, “much like brothers or sisters”, explains Singleton.
Renaissance Man? Polymath? Philosopher? Perennial student? Although these labels seem apt, Singleton might consider them mere “cultural constructs” as he continually explores the seen and the unseen in both art and life. With a Diploma of Design; a Graduate Diploma of Art Education; a Graduate Diploma of Religious Education; and a Bachelor of Education, a couple of hours with the artist reveals him to be connected to both people and places, inquisitive, generous, patient, practical, humble, and a person of quiet faith.
There’s much to be learned from Singleton as both a printmaker and a person, and the BGS community will be richer for his contribution to the 2015 BGS Art Show.
The Brisbane Grammar School Art Committee is proud to present the 46th Annual Art Show 2015.
The event will feature a ticketed opening on Friday 21 August at 7.00pm, and will coincide with BGS Open Day on Saturday 22 August, with free admission from 10.00am – 3.00pm.