Pressing in #9034, from the series Relief
Singapore, Malaysia, Australia
Simryn Gill’s work is engaged with the personal and collective experience of place and history. Her subjects are taken from her immediate environment. She collects, sifts and organises organic and found materials in a poetic and personal response to larger environmental, geopolitical and cultural forces.
This print is from a body of work produced by Simryn Gill and custom printer Trent Walter, of Negative Press, Melbourne. It was printed in Port Dickson, a town of about 90,000 south of Kuala Lumpur on the Strait of Malacca, where the artist spends part of her time living and working.
Over the years Gill has collected lumber washed up from the sea at Port Dickson. The wood is of varying sizes - from hand sized to much larger – and has been machine or hand-shaped for various uses, since become weathered and degraded by seawater. Some betray clues as to their origin – a hole cut for an oar, a painted surface, marks made by borers and other insects – occluded over time by the encrustations of sea life and rot.
For printing, Gill utilised a collection of papers she built up over time including wage records, star charts, accounting ledgers and reference books sourced in junk shops, markets and online. Some make reference to industries and trades linked to the sea, and represent a continuation of her sustained practice since the early 1990s of using books and printed texts in her work.
Over a period of two weeks Walter and Gill printed more than 160 works by hand; The results…are like texts and the process of our rubbings closer to handwriting than printing. The paper holds our touch and it as though the paper receiving the crisp ink ….has revived the worn, wooden objects. (Trent Walter ‘Seven reflections on uses for printmaking’ Keynote speech, Orogeny Print Symposium, Tasmanian College of the Arts, 9 September 2016. For transcript see www.imprint.org.au/category/printmaking accessed 19/1/2017)
colour woodblock print on found wage journal pages
29.2 x 54.3 cm each sheet; 116.7 x 54.3 cm overall
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Purchased with funds provided by the Australian Prints, Drawings and Watercolours Benefactors' Fund 2017
Not on display
© Simryn Gill