Land Marks: John Jones
Linoprints, Cibachrome Prints and Drawings 1979-2019
Saturday 2 March – Sunday 31 March 2019
Thursdays – Sundays 11.00am – 4.00pm and at other times by appointment. Admission is free.
John Jones was one of the founding artists of Crescent Arts and this exhibition marks the launch of Crescent Arts 40th Anniversary celebrations. We’re delighted that Lady Ayckbourn, as a longstanding supporter of Crescent Arts and friend of the artist, has kindly agreed to open the exhibition.
John Jones has been working as an artist-printmaker for over 40 years and the exhibition ‘LAND MARKS’ brings together a selection of linoprints, cibachrome prints and drawings which exemplify his creative range, innovative approach and technical prowess developed over a considerable period of sustained artistic practice.
The works in the exhibition naturally form distinct groupings through a range of themes and media. The earliest works included are observational drawings of landscape, architecture and of the human figure. While these are not ‘preparatory’ drawings they, nonetheless, inform later work. The same can be said of the series of Cibachrome prints, ‘Yorkshire Wolds Rape Fields in May’ (1984), photographic images produced at Crescent Arts which re-surface as colour reduction-block linoprints a decade or so later.
The exhibition does not aim to present work in a chronological sequence, rather to make connections between different sources of inspiration, imagery and processes as filtered through the artist’s wide-ranging experience and practice over an extended period of time. The process of reduction-block linoprint is clearly central to the artist’s creative and technical approach and the exhibition presents linoprints as series, small groups of related prints, and as individual works. With his land and seascape colour prints, John dispenses with the traditional linear key block system of linoprinting, devising a pure tonal and more painterly additive colour printing method. He also experiments with processes such as etching lino to introduce very fluid and subtle painterly and textural qualities to the printed image.
The North Yorkshire landscape features strongly. John Jones has a remarkable facility to capture the weather conditions of different seasons at various times of day, and the extraordinary qualities of light and colour in the landscape, through his highly disciplined process of printmaking. A further series of prints is derived from the superlative wood-engravings of Thomas Bewick (1753-1828), translating several of his ‘British Land Birds’ engravings into life-size linoprints. Architectural elements recur, often through use of ‘the window’ as a framing device, which can be seen in such prints as the ‘Lunette’ series (2014) and more recently in the series of twelve prints, ‘A Mediaeval Zodiac’ (2016/17), based on images taken from the stained glass at Chartres Cathedral.
It’s not possible to do justice to the accomplishments of John Jones as an artist, nor to his contribution as a teacher and to Scarborough’s creative community, in such a brief account as this. We are indebted to John Jones as one of the artists who founded Crescent Arts in 1979 and we’re proud to acknowledge his considerable standing as an artist through this exhibition.
Stuart Cameron, Director of Crescent Arts
Exhibition Events and Workshops in March
John Jones ‘in conversation’
Wednesday March 6 at 7.00pm
Admission is free
John Jones will give an informal tour of the exhibition, with an opportunity for visitors to discuss the work with the artist. All are welcome and booking is not necessary. Light refreshments will be served.
Reduction-Block Linoprint Workshop
Saturday March 23, 10.00am – 4.00pm
Artist-tutor: John Jones
Crescent Arts members £30 / non-members £40
John Jones trained at Bath Academy of Art, Corsham (1961-1964). He went on to teach art at secondary school level before taking up a post as teacher of Fine Art and Visual Media at North Riding College of Higher Education in Scarborough. John Jones is widely-travelled and was a guest lecturer at the Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts and Savannah School of Art & Design, Georgia, USA, 1976-1996. In addition to working as an artist and teacher of art, John Jones has consistently promoted the visual arts in Scarborough. He was a founding member of Crescent Arts in 1979 and has been a strong supporter and life-long member of Crescent Arts up to the present day. He was also an advisory member of Yorkshire Arts Association’s Visual Arts Panel (now Arts Council England, North) and an instigator, organiser and participant in Yorkshire Coast Open Studios which evolved into North Yorkshire Open Studios from 2006.
John Jones has exhibited widely regionally, nationally and internationally. Major solo exhibitions include those at Polaroid Gallery, Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S.A., (1981); Crescent Arts, Scarborough, (1982, 1987, 2002); Bretton Hall, Wakefield, (1985); Lumiere Gallery, Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A., (1996); Huddersfield Art Gallery, (2000); Old Meeting House Arts Centre, Helmsley, (2002); Darlington Arts Centre, (2005); Biscuit Factory Gallery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, (2010); Arthub Gallery, Deptford, London, (2014).
He has also taken part in a wide range of group exhibitions and is currently an exhibiting member of North Yorkshire Printmakers’ Circle of professional printmakers.