‘War + Peace’, Selected Biro Drawings 2008 – 2014

'War + Peace', Selected Biro Drawings 2008 - 2014 by Jane Lee McCracken, Front Cover

‘War + Peace’, Selected Biro Drawings 2008 – 2014 Limited Edition Hardback Book by Jane Lee McCracken, 2014, Cover

Published today, I am delighted to say that 50 limited edition copies of my new book are now available.  Here is some information about ‘War + Peace’ and a look inside!

” ‘War + Peace’, by multimedia Artist Jane Lee McCracken brings together a selection of her intricate Biro drawings. This beautifully produced hardback book replicates every detail of Jane’s black and colour Biro drawings from several bodies of work spanning 6 years, including, ‘Tales from the East’, ‘The Woodcutter’s Cottage’, ‘In Homage to the Last Carnivores of Eurasia’ and her recent artwork for conservation projects. Inspired by her passion for childhood memoirs, fairy tales, travel, forests and animals and her continuing exploration of the themes of ‘war’ and ‘loss’, multimedia artist Jane makes multiplex, layered drawings in colour or black Biro, using her drawings as inspiration to create objects and installations.  Taking photographs of films and documentaries, her muse lily, people, animals and found objects as the foundation of her work, she builds complex layers of drawn images in Biro as if film still projections, resulting in monotone or colour abstracted pieces with an ethereal, cinematic quality.  Her aim is to make art that represents the beauty and brutal reality of life thus creating “memorials of lives lived, both human and animal and ways of life lost”. Evoking consideration of loss whether through war or disaster, her work draws upon empathy for the emotional or physical scars experienced by humans, animals or the environment.”

EDITION:

Limited Edition of 50 Hardback Books

Signed and numbered in gold with personal dedication option included

Original Gold Tiger Drawing produced in each copy

To purchase or for further information:

www.janeleemccracken.co.uk/shop/artbook

 Here is a taster of what’s inside! 

'War + Peace', Selected Biro Drawings 2008 - 2014, by Jane Lee McCracken, 'American Dream' 2014

‘American Dream’, ‘War + Peace’ 2014

 

'Our Forefathers' & 'Mummy Bear and Baby Bear', 'War + Peace', 2014

‘Our Forefathers’ & ‘Mummy Bear and Baby Bear’, ‘War + Peace’, 2014

'Butterfly Lover', 'War + Peace', 2014

‘Butterfly Lover’, ‘War + Peace’, 2014

'The Cupboard' & 'Sindy and the Troika', 'War + Peace', 2014

‘The Cupboard’ & ‘Sindy and the Troika’, ‘War + Peace’, 2014

'TV Screen II - Where Wolves and Bears Dare', 'War + Peace', 2014

‘TV Screen II – Where Wolves and Bears Dare’, ‘War + Peace’, 2014

'Shh, it's a Tiger!', 'War + Peace', 2014, Back Cover

‘Shh, it’s a Tiger!’, ‘War + Peace’, 2014, Back Cover

Original Gold Tiger Drawing in each book.

Original Gold Tiger Drawing in each book.

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Dream the ‘American Dream’!

'American Dream', colour Biro drawing, 2014 by Jane Lee McCracken

‘American Dream’, 2014, colour Biro drawing, 60cm x 42 cm by Jane Lee McCracken

This year’s artwork for the Wolf Conservation Center, NY (WCC)‘American Dream’ has taken four months in the making.  Not only does it feature WCC wolves, Atka, Alawa, Zephyr and Nikai but it places wolves at the very heart of the Great American Wilderness highlighting the essential keystone species they are.

ABOUT ‘AMERICAN DREAM’

'American Dream', colour Biro drawing, 2014, detail - Zephyr

‘American Dream’, colour Biro drawing,  detail –  Zephyr

“Winter howls through Yellowstone National Park, sweeping across Ambassador wolf Zephyr’s fur.  An intrepid stag plunges through a deep blanket of snow, pursued by wolves, as a bison battles against a blizzard on the plains between the mountains.

'American Dream', colour Biro drawing, detail - Nikai and Monarch Butterfly

‘American Dream’, colour Biro drawing, detail – Nikai and Monarch Butterfly

A mountain bluebird heralds the arrival of spring, as a bear wakes from hibernation and a bison calf is caught in a spring shower, while Alpine flowers blossom on Zephyr’s legs. Summer shimmers on the wings of a monarch butterfly announcing the arrival of Nikai, the Wolf Conservation Center’s newest Ambassador. Nikai listens to the bluebird’s song as bison rut in a summer meadow.

'American Dream', colour Biro Drawing, detail - Zephyr and Alawa as pups and Atka leaping over a stream

‘American Dream’, colour Biro Drawing, detail – Zephyr and Alawa as pups and Atka leaping over a stream

Fall flickers over Zephyr, as a pup, and turns to winter over Alawa, also as a pup and the wolf pack led by Atka return to their winter trail.  Atka, the leader of the WCC Ambassador Pack, gleams like the sun on the wings of a monarch butterfly. He watches over Zephyr, Alawa, and Nikai in a landscape where wolves roam free.”

"American Dream', colour Biro drawing, detail - Atka and Monarch Butterfly

“American Dream’, colour Biro drawing, detail – Atka and Monarch Butterfly

MAKING  ‘AMERICAN DREAM’

I found inspiration for ‘American Dream’ from the BBC film “Yellowstone” (2009), taking hundreds of still photographs as the film played, searching for images that would best represent the wildlife that has inhabited North America for thousands of years. Also working with beautiful images of wolves taken by Rebecca Bose of the WCC, my aspiration was to try and capture the majesty of the center’s wolves.

Biro (ballpoint pen) is a difficult medium to work with.  There is no room for error as erasing is not possible, Biro blots meaning the nibs have to be constantly cleaned, also the colour range is limited resulting in most colours being mixed directly within the drawing to achieve the palette required.  Making a drawing of this scale therefore takes several months.  But the result is colours of such vibrancy and depth that resemble pigment inks whilst working with the age old technique of ‘drawing’, that still remains with us since the earliest art produced by man, millennia ago.

Ultimately the aim of this artwork was to create a piece that presents wolves as a keystone species while evoking the timeless beauty of the American landscape. Monarch butterflies appear in the drawing highlighting that they too are a vulnerable species, their epic North American migration to Mexico now under threat. The spectrum of colors applied in the drawing reflect the beauty of our natural world, while the dominance of red, white, and blue suggest American traditions and resound ‘hope’ that wolves and other wildlife are thriving again through the inspirational work of organizations such as WCC which dream the ‘American Dream’ and are making it a reality!

‘American Dream’ will be auctioned at this year’s WCC ‘Wine & Wolves’ Holiday Celebration Event on 4th December, with all profits raised going directly to WCC.

Limited Edition Prints

EDITIONS

20 A2 (same size as the original drawing) limited edition signed and numbered archival pigment prints

50 A3 limited edition signed and numbered archival pigment prints

are now available:

www.janeleemccracken.co.uk/shop/conservation art prints

All profits from each print sale go directly to WCC for their vital work conserving wolves.

Wishing Atka, Alawa, Zephyr, Nikai and all at WCC a wonderful ‘Wine & Wolves’!

Photo Credit: Rebecca Bose, WCC

Photo Credit: Rebecca Bose, WCC

 

 

 

Postcard logo back

‘Lily and the Kids’ – In the Deep, Dark Forests of Europe

'Lily and the Kids', 2012, Biro drawing and vintage German postcard, by Jane Lee McCracken (postcard Artist's own collection bought on Ebay)

‘Lily and the Kids’, by Jane Lee McCracken, 2012, quilt square design, blue and black Biro drawing and vintage German postcard of Der Wolf und die sieben Geißlein

Once upon a time there lived a Woodcutter in a cottage, deep in the forests of Europe, who collected images and objects.  No one ever saw the Woodcutter for he was a recluse and preferred the company of the forest animals rather than people.  But he saw everything, the good and the bad.  At first life and death as Nature intended and in time, life and death in Man’s own way.  The Woodcutter’s only companion was a television set where he gained his knowledge of the world outside the forests through film.  The forest animals came and went over time, the people and the wars.  And in response to all he saw in the forests and on the screen he made art – drawings and objects to remember the animals and people by and to ask ‘WHY?'”

‘Lily and the Kids’ is the first of a quintet of quilt squares specifically designed for ‘The Woodcutter’s Quilt’ which was part of the installation for ‘The Woodcutter’s Cottage’ Exhibition.  The quintet was created using black, blue and colour Biro drawings, vintage postcards bought on Ebay from my own collection and stills from Russian animation films.

'The Woodcutter's Quilt', 2012, transfers on calico, hand embroidery and black silk by Jane Lee McCracken

‘The Woodcutter’s Quilt’, 2012, transfers on calico, hand embroidery and black silk by Jane Lee McCracken

The other four squares include:

‘Bear’

'Bear', 2012, colour Biro drawing and vintage German Postcard by Jane Lee McCracken (Postcard Artist's own collection bought on Ebay)

‘Bear’, by Jane Lee McCracken, 2012, quilt square design, colour Biro drawing and vintage German postcard of Snow White

‘Ice Fox’

'Ice Fox', 2012, colour Biro drawing and digital montage of Ivan Bilibin postcard by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Ice Fox’, by Jane Lee McCracken, 2012, quilt square design, colour Biro drawing and Ivan Bilibin postcard

‘Siberian Tiger’

'Siberian Tiger', 2012, colour Biro drawing and digital montage of Ivan Bilibin postcard by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Siberian Tiger’, Jane Lee McCracken, 2012, quilt square design, colour Biro drawing and Ivan Bilibin postcard

‘Doll, Pink Boris and the Rabbit’

'Doll, Pink Boris and The Rabbit', 2012 colour Biro drawing and montage of Artist's still of the animation 'Fox and Rabbit' by Yuri Norstein, by Jane Lee McCracken

‘Doll, Pink Boris and The Rabbit’, Jane Lee McCracken, 2012, quilt square design, colour Biro drawing and Artist’s still of the animation ‘Fox and Rabbit’ by Yuri Norstein, 1973

‘Lily and the Kids’ and ‘Bear’ limited edition Archival Pigment Prints made by the excellent Jack Lowe Studio are sold with profits donated to the Wolves and Humans Foundation

‘Ice Fox’ and ‘Siberian Tiger’ limited edition Archival Pigment Prints also made by Jack Lowe Studio are sold with profits donated to the Born Free Foundation

For further information on prints please visit my website 

HAPPY BURNS DAY!

And to the Haggis,

“Fair fa’ your honest, soncie face,

Great Chieftain o’ the puddin race”