After a break from printmaking, famous Kiwi artist Rodney Fumpston (Williams 1960-1964) is working on a new series of print work which will be exhibited within the next few years.
“I had a break from work after leaving Elam School of Fine Arts where I was a lecturer. I ran away from it all and I now spend my time between Fiji and Hamilton,” says Rodney.
After working as an artist for more than 30 years and establishing himself as one of New Zealand’s most well know print makers, Rodney took a well-deserved break.
“Printmaking is a very demanding activity. I have done a lot of my own printing and the physical side is quiet hard.”
Rodney specialises in etchings, lithographs and woodcrafts – mediums that he describes as time consuming and laborious when trying to get the full creative potential out of each process.
His meticulous nature to working on art, his level of perfectionism and insistence to explore the art form means we will be waiting a few more years for his new work to be released.
“I have been staging a comeback in my work and am hoping to have an exhibition sometime in the future.”
“To have an exhibition, you need to accumulate quite a bit of work. That’s what I am doing now is building up a body of work rather than releasing things in drips and drabs.”
His inspiration to become an artist stems from many places and not one particular person or moment. Rodney recalls a woman called Ida Carey (staff 1960-1961) being one of his first muses.
“There wasn’t a lot of art when I was at St Paul’s but there was a lady Ida Carey. She taught us art and I did private lessons with her at her studio in Hamilton. She was very inspirational.”
“I would also credit Rodney Hamel (staff 1963-2000). He taught me history and geography and he was also a painter. He was a very inspirational teacher.”
Although Rodney’s teachers helped brew his love of art, it wasn’t until he studied at university that he discovered a love for printmaking.
Rodney discovered the art form while studying a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Masters of Fine Arts at Elam School of Fine Arts in Auckland. He then explored the medium at the Central School of Fine Art and Design in London where he completed Advanced Studies in Printmaking.
As for the inspiration behind his technique, that is something Rodney pulls from his own personal experiences, a creative exploration of printmaking mediums and his artistic soul.
“I have tried to find my own way, rather than be too inspired by others.”