In a world of Photoshop filters and cheap offset lithographs, the artist as artisan is slowly becoming a dying breed. Grand Rapids, MI based artist Todd Freeman is clearly an exception to this rule as can be seen in his latest body of work, now on view at Gallery Hijinks in San Francisco. Freeman’s etchings of fantastically abstract situations and creatures hearken back to the beginnings of the natural sciences and their distribution through books and prints. Get a look at some more examples of the artist’s etchings, as well as some words by him in regards to his influences below.
“Printmaking has a rich and colorful tradition in the natural sciences, and I have always admired the strange and often oversimplified nature of old taxonomy prints. Bizarre scenes of specimens in old scientific volumes were commonly recorded third or fourth-hand from expeditions and reports in far-off lands. By the time these printed forms reached their audiences, they were often wildly different then their original descriptions. My etchings are rooted in the sincere language of these taxonomies; clean floating presentations that allow their subjects ample room for examination. This simple, yet sharply authoritative format can validate even the most implausible of subjects. My prints draw material from the natural and supernatural kingdoms, referencing both alleged anomalies and legitimate marvels. They are inert swatches from the natural world, and offer documentation for stories that time has lost or dismissed.”