Peel Back
Lilian Ptacek

Year: 2016
Medium: Monotype, screenprint, frottage transfer
and collage on Somerset paper

Dimensions: 112 x 76 cm · 44 x 30 in

This piece belongs to a series of three prints which consider how destructive marks can act ​as a form of gilding. They host a variety of processes including monotype, screenprint, frottage ​transfer and collage. Marks are often used to whitewash or obscure motifs in compositions, leaving certain elements intact. This obscuring of motifs references the destructive processes used in iconoclastic acts, such as those present in the largely state-sponsored stripping of religious imagery during the English Reformation of the 16th century.

During this period ​many church panels depicting saints were defaced and sometimes cut down to be remade into furniture. Often, those tasked by the state to do so subtly rebelled by avoiding damage to the religious idols. The artist deploys ambiguity around ​questions of faith creating work ​which oscillates between critique and devotion.