The exhibition consists of two rooms of lithographic prints from the Tamarind Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Although described in the accompanying pamphlet as a ‘world-class exhibition’ celebrating the ‘diversity of the medium’, it comes across as a small and very eclectic mix.
Some prints imitate charcoal or pencil drawings, such as the ‘Bird in Hand’ series by Kiki Smith, comprising 5 sketch-like prints showing a hand holding a bird. The awkward rendering is connotative of clumsy studies drawn in the first art classes of high school. A more successful attempt comes from Jim Dine’s works, ‘Diana with Poem’ and ‘Tools for Earth’. Both incorporate the expressive abilities of charcoal as well as ink splashes highlighting the unpredictability of printmaking.
More colourful prints such as the work of P Shelton and Luke Dorman are reminiscent of newspaper cartoons. Others bring to mind the 'primitive' cultures of Africa, India or the Native Americans.There are also abstract lithographs which range from ‘Untitled I’ by Leif Kalaf, a greyscale piece dominated by different-sized black dots, to Julie Evans' work ‘Radialspores’ - a green and pink print evoking ideas of the cosmos or the human form. Another notable abstract work is ‘Mort Bleu I’ by Dirk De Bruycker. In ‘Mort Bleu II’, the prominent shape recalls both a Rorschach ink-blot and a violet, the form emphasised by a blurred grey background.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the exhibition is actually the window looking out onto the Edinburgh Printmaker’s workshop. The view shows artists of both genders from a wide age range working on various areas of printmaking such as screen-printing, etching or lithography. Although the exhibition highlights distinct styles in the broad area of printmaking, the scene framed by the window encapsulates a far more diverse representation of the medium than An Informed Energy manages to achieve.