Jen Craun


Beautiful Sound.

At last, my commissioned print for the Cleveland Clinic is all finished and delivered. It was a pleasure of an opportunity, but I am glad that it’s one of the items now crossed off the to-do list of my previous post. The title of the etching is Beautiful Sound, and it’s a good sized image printed up on a 22 x 30 inch sheet of Rives.

Here’s the statement of description that I just sent off to the Cleveland Clinic:

“Swooping etched lines stretch across this piece–three of which are tethered gently to the red chine colle’ birds–as if pulled and held by other birds just beyond the view. The three red birds are pulling up, and taking flight; they are leading out. I have long included birds in many of my prints as symbols of both longed-for and attained redemption and new freedoms. I use a light and softly transparent yellow relief ink rolled directly over the plate tone and printing false-bite from the etching process, in an effort to indicate my hopeful honesty in recording our efforts to make the best of what we have in this moment. I believe time is measured patiently, and marked in seasons. The white and looping line that cuts into the lower yellow section delineates the pattern of a birds wing in flight, as it builds up momentum to soar. The accumulation and  visual increase of this curving line that bends around and crosses over itself again and again as it both widens and heightens expresses these few and precious hard-worked-for moments when we can enjoy the view of right now.”

The print was commissioned as part of an award that they are creating to honor leaders within the Cleveland Clinic. It is a triumphant piece that remembers the explosion and fire at the Cleveland Clinic in 1929, and is part of their 90th Anniversary celebration.  I understand that a range of my work was shown to the committee that was formed, naturally including their art department, and they identified a previous print of mine that they really responded to for this occasion/award. It was a piece that I created in the coming undone suite, titled permanence of place. I drew several sketches for the commission, which were further discussed by the committee. I was happy to learn that the team quickly and unanimously decided on the proposed: Beautiful Sound.

It was nice to etch and print such a large copper plate again, and to spend so many studio days at the press. The print is being framed, and will be permanently installed in the main building by the end of the month for a ceremony planned for May 29, 2012. It was an honor to be asked to make this piece, and I am quite excited to see it on display in the next couple of weeks.

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