Elaine d'Esterre

Feminist Visual Artist – Paintings, Mixed Media and Etchings


Artwork with Frottage

Background for Underpainting

Stage 1

The frottage for this painting ( 98×120 cm)  is a technique which allows me to connect with the landscape. The place was Lake Mungo in NSW. Particular parts of landscape marked the paper when I either rubbed a soft piece of charcoal and/or graphite across the surface that moulded the surface beneath revealing its texture or by another method placing wet paper into soil which over a short time stains the paper. Then later back in my studio I incorporate the frottage into larger paintings.

I began with a gesso washed and soaked frottage in order to seal the paper from later oil painted layers, a method to prevent discolouration and rot.

The triptych-like frottage shows three different textures. One was taken from a rock and rubbed with a mixture of graphite, compressed charcoal and water, the middle texture was a mixture of stain and a rubbing done over the clay surface in front of the dune called The Walls of China and in the third I tried to take sand imprints. That technique required an ink surface onto which randomly scattered sand was meant to absorb the ink which when dry would blow off leaving a dotted pitted surface (not totally successful).