Biography for Iona Howard
Howard's prints explore the notion of time and landscape through a contemplative exploration of surface. The sources of my prints can come from working in the open air or expressing landscape filtered through memory. The physicality of her approach to the printing process makes the subject spontaneous and vibrant whilst capturing an intimate connection with the landscape.
Iona Howard captures the ancient semi-natural landscapes typical of her native west Cornwall where a blurred line exists between nature and human activity. Recent works of the Fens focus on the meeting point of land, horizon and sky, their flatness altering the perception of distance. Her work has gradually evolved from monochromatic studies by introducing colour to reflect the Fens’ ever changing mood and light, drawing inspiration from sites which have a particular sense of place; the catalyst for most of her significant pieces of work.
Howard's plates are predominantly carborundum, a technique where a mix of a binder and carborundum grit is applied onto the surface of a plate and inked up. It provides highly embossed, velvety textures and rich, dense tones. This medium allows the freedom to work on a large scale in the same way as approaching painting. To contrast the carborundum, drypoint is added to produce an incised line, characteristically thin, linear and precise. Colour is introduced by layering carborundum plates or more often realised though monoprint. She tends to print to the edge of the paper to leave the composition as unconstrained as the landscapes from which she seeks inspiration.
When she was a student at Falmouth and Winchester Schools of Art, she was selected for the Design Enterprise Programme at The Royal College of Art and was awarded an MA in Fine Art Printmaking at Cambridge School of Art in 2009. In 2012 she was awarded the Curwen Studio prize at the Royal Society of Painter Printmakers Summer Exhibition. Her prints Goonhilly Downs and White Downs State III were selected for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibitions in 2015 and 2016 respectively. A print was also selected for the National Original Print Exhibition at Bankside Gallery, London in 2018. Iona was awarded The Hawthorn Printmakers Award for "Most Interesting Use of Medium" for her work on show at the Cambridge Original Printmakers Biennale 2018.