Exploration and symbolic interpretation of alternative printing surfaces using the serigraphic printing technique.
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The contemporary industrial world today provides a variety of printing surfaces, for example, glass, biscuit –fired clay slabs, stone slates, plastic, acrylic boards, and other synthetic materials which have not been effectively and seriously explored as alternative surfaces for printmaking. Yet many of them are in abundance and rich in terms of surface quality that can enhance the quality of fine art prints. As a trainer of teacher-trainees for secondary schools, and former trainee both at the Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Arts, Makerere University, and at the Department of Art and Industrial Design, Kyambogo University, it was my observation that whereas the course content in each of the two institutions of higher learning is open to the employment of various printing surfaces, the artworks produced in printmaking are predominantly being executed on conventional surfaces like paper, cloth and wood. This study practically explores how alternative surfaces like glass, clay slabs, stone slates, plastic, acrylic boards, and other synthetic materials can extend the printmaking experience, and the way of looking at prints in relation to societal needs and issues on identity. The themes explored in this study visually interrogate the lost moral values within society and attempt to address the unpleasant social and political life in Uganda, using the medium of serigraphy commonly referred to as screen-printmaking. An exploratory survey design was used for this study and the research data collection methods used included: library and archival survey, empirical observation, an d studio experiments. Major findings of the study highlight the potential of alternative surfaces, besides paper and cloth. With the current need for diversity in printmaking efforts to explore the potential of alternative surfaces is paramount.
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