Marbling Workshop: The Art of Painting on Water
Sun, March 22, 2020 from 1:30 pm to 4 pm
at 9 W. Hastings, Vancouver
All levels welcome and encouraged
By donation (suggested $50 / participant – pay what you can or free if you can’t)
includes all supplies and materials
maximum 12 participants
What is marbling?
Come and experience the magic of this mesmerizing art technique, which has a long and expansive history in many nations. Marbling originated in 12th century Japan in the Suminagashi style, or “ink floating”. This technique is said to have been discovered by accident when a member of the Imperial family dropped some ink into water and upon seeing the intricate patterns rise to the surface, put a piece of paper on the floating ink, lifted it up, thereby preserving the image. Ebru is another type of marbling, Turkish for “cloud art,” which originated in Turkey, Persia, and India in the fifteenth century. This style is very colourful and intricate. During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, marbling spread throughout Europe, where it soon became a sister art to bookbinding. You may have seen marbling on the inside covers of old books, in a similar tradition. However, the European marbling was shrouded in secrets of recipes and techniques. For example, apprentice marblers were taught only one step of the marbling process to prevent the artists’ secrets from spreading. Today, marbling has been growing and gaining momentum all over the world for textile artists, bookbinders, and multi-media artists of many kinds. I love giving marbling workshops because it is an accessible art technique and artists of all skill levels are always astounded at what they’re able to create.
The artist gently drops vivid, non-toxic acrylic inks, swirling in intricate patterns on top of a thickened water, which is referred to as ‘size’. The inks expand and float on top of the size, which can then be manipulated by slowly pulling a stick through the water. The painting mimics the flow of water as the artist creates endless colours and intricate forms. The balance between controlling the inks and the unpredictability of how they expand and change is mesmerizing. Every new piece is both a surprise and an accomplishment, a reaction that is shared from 5-year-old kids to professional artists to elders. After 1-2 minutes of marbling, the painting is transferred to paper or fabric. You will be amazed at the intricacy and natural beauty of your painting. This workshop will be led by Dora Prieto and includes one piece of watercolour paper and one piece of cloth to marble.
Follow Dora Prieto (@marbledmagic) on Instagram: