Woodcut Prints ("The Land of Diorama" & "Island of Agriculture"
By Josh K Winkler
I chose to critique the thesis project of Josh K Winkler. His work was focused around a collection of "woodcut" prints. These prints look very unique because of the seldom-used method he chose to use. His prints were also accompanied by a story detailing the background of the pictures. I really liked that he provided background to his pictures because the pictures were so familiar looking it was nice to find out where they came from. I decided to focus this critique on two of his prints, The Land of Diorama and Island of Agriculture. The Land of Diorama is a picture of large-scale fish at a tourist attraction. I was immediately was drawn to this because I remember seeing these fish as a child. All the fish are native of the Midwest and the main attraction in this picture is the giant Muskie. This was the only print by Winkler that doesn't feature really obvious man made intervention on nature. However his background on this piece does present a message along those lines. He was showing how man has conquered the once wild lakes, rivers and streams of this area. He also talked about how the landscaped area surrounding the model fish required watering the grass, which makes you think about how man has impacted wildlife. The other painting by Winkler I really liked was entitled "Island of Agriculture." This print provided a much more in-your-face view of man's intervention in nature. The viewpoint of this picture is on top of a cliff, overlooking a bay and other waterways. This view should make one feel at ease with this beautiful vantage point but this print doesn't anything but make you feel at ease. There is garbage in the foreground of the picture and large power lines running's through the background. The once scenic bat is littered with boats and different types of ugly industrial machinery. I thought this print provided a vivid look into how quickly a scenic bay can be turned into an industrial nightmare!