Iona Howard’s fine art carborundum prints explore surface and line created over time through human interaction with the landscape. Iona’s work features flat fenland vistas near her Cambridgeshire studio and the softer lines of Iona’s native west Cornwall.
Iona is captivated by the ancient semi-natural landscapes typical of West Penwith and The Lizard where a blurred line exists between nature and human activity. Her recent prints of The Fens convey a raw blackness of earth etched with converging lines of lode and plough. Here the lines of history are more stark: plough and crop lines change through the seasons, patterning the fenland bound in by lodes and banks.
Iona’s plates are predominantly carborundum, a technique where a mix of a binder and carborundum grit is applied onto the surface of a plate and inked up. It provides highly embossed, velvety textures and rich, dense tones. This medium allows the freedom to work on a large scale in the same way as approaching painting. To contrast the carborundum, drypoint is added to produce an incised line, characteristically thin, linear and precise. Colour is introduced by using one or more carborundum plates or adding layers of monoprint.
Iona completed an MA in Fine Art Printmaking at Cambridge School of Art in 2009 and in 2012 was awarded the Curwen Studio prize at the Royal Society of Painter Printmakers Summer Exhibition. Her prints Goonhilly Downs and White Downs State III were selected for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibitions in 2015 and 2016 respectively.