Photo reportage from the exhibition 'Soft Touch on the Deckle' by Maria Erikson at the Draakon gallery

February 2, 2023
Author Echo Gone Wrong

Maria Erikson’s solo exhibition Soft Touch on the Deckle opened in Draakon gallery on January 11, 2023. Exhibition will stay open until February 4, 2023.

At her present exhibition Soft Touch on the Deckle, the artist observes her relationship with the process of graphic art involving the body of the artist and the lithographic limestone. Seeking parallels and contradictions between them a comparison is made between a body and its surface to the one of the stone. While attributing limestone with human skin-like ability to memorize, Erikson explores her personal artwork as a dialogue between the two bodies – the one of the artist and the one of the stone. Through material interactions and contact events new forms of co-existence and non-hierarchical ways of communication between them emerge.

The surface of lithographic stone is smooth and porous. Similarly to skin it records the touch that stratifies over time. Lithographic liquid tusche is commonly used in Erikson’s artistic practice. Its dried coatings on the surface of the litho stone result in reticulation that can be seen as an abstract landscape. In this way the touch between the artist and the material as well as the stone´s geological strata are interwtined.

Soft Touch on the Deckle is a three-part exhibition project – the first part is being exhibited here in Draakon gallery, the second one will be displayed in Ratamo gallery, Jyväskylä in March 2023 and the third part will be held in the Museum of Lithography in Sweden in April 2023.

Engagement and contact are central in Maria Erikson’s artistic practice. With the focus on materiality and materials as sets of relationships, she investigates visible and non-visible relations that are produced by the gestures between them. In new structural arrangements she investigates their jointness and indifferences, bodiliness and ability to inhabit shared space. Maria Erikson has completed two-year studies as a collaborative lithography printer and holds a Master Printer certificate from Tamarind Institute (USA), obtained MA degree in the printmaking study area at the Academy of Fine Arts/Uniarts Helsinki (Finland). In 2019, Maria Erikson received the Eduard Wiiralt grant and in 2021 she was awarded with Ann-Margret Lindell Grant for Printmaking (Sweden). Among her recent exhibitions are Notes from Borderspace (ARS Project Space, 2022); Taidegrafiikan tapa olla – materiality, collaboration and agency (Exhibition Laboratory, Helsinki, 2021); Grafik (Gallery Sander, Norrköping, Sweden, 2021).

Exhibition is supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia.
The artist expresses her gratitude to: Liina Siib, Paul Rannik, Mart Saarepuu, department of graphic art at the Estonian Academy of Arts.
Exhibitions in Draakon gallery are supported by the Cultural Endowment of Estonia, Estonian Ministry of Culture and Liviko Ltd.

Exhibition by Maria Erikson
Title: Soft Touch on the Deckle
Open: 11.01.-04.02.2023
Draakon Gallery, Pikk 18, Tallinn.
Mon-Fri 11.00-18.00, Sat 11.00-17.00

Photography: Anna Mari Liivrand