Emma Lawrenson produces beautiful abstract screen prints with a distinctively understated, elegant, minimalist aesthetic. On completion of her degree in Fine Art, Emma went on to gain a Masters Degree in printmaking from the Royal College of Art. She has won several awards and her work has been exhibited in numerous exhibitions in the UK and Europe, including at the Royal Academy. Her prints are sold worldwide.
Emma has been greatly influenced by the American Color Field artists, as well as elements of Fifties textile design. She was also inspired by the muted palette of Agnes Martin, the contemporary abstract paintings of Andrew Bick and Breon O'Casey and the shapes created by designer and architect Ettore Sottsass. She takes inspiration from ordinary, unremarkable spaces, objects and the rural landscape: “Whilst stemming from observations of man-made and natural forms, the finished prints are pared down through a process of subtracting elements and cropping until the original source of inspiration is often concealed, creating in its place a perfectly balanced and coloured image.”
Emma works using the screen printing process which enables her to produce smooth, flat, crisp images, exploring shape and form through the layering of colours and textures. She likes to work around repetition, forming patterns and using lines, stripes and hand drawn textures to add interest. She uses the finest handmade papers, making sure each layer is dry before adding the next colour, building up the prints little by little. When they are finished, she presses them between acid-free tissue paper and boards to flatten perfectly. She works with methodical, painstaking precision.
The elements of colour, form and shape are fundamental to Emma’s work: “From the initial origins/drawings/photographs in my sketchbooks I begin a process of stripping everything back to the bare essentials through a process of abstraction. Images then begin to evolve as small paintings or collages. I spend my time adding, removing and moving pieces around on a background, allowing the image to slowly define itself. The emphasis of the work then becomes wholly about shape, colour, proportion, scale and balance.”
Emma strongly believes in ethical production and prints using only water-based inks and recycled packaging. Every piece that she makes is handmade, using traditional techniques and in a very small edition.