The following selection of prints by William Crozier (1930 – 2011) are full of vibrant colour, virtuoso drawing and a passionate engagement with landscape and still-life.
Crozier approached printmaking as a parallel activity to painting, relishing the freedom of the print medium and his collaboration with master-printers. The prints here were created between 1993 and 2010 at the Graphic Studio, Dublin and with the Berardinelli family of printers in Verona, each studio prompting distinctive approaches to image-making. Crozier explained the collective effort of making a print as akin to making jazz. He said “I see it as kind of an ensemble: one guy doesn’t know what the rest are going to do. With the colours of the band, a good musician is listening to the other person and he’ll wait and come in on the right note, and then someone else will come in.”
Each of the prints was inspired by a powerful visual experience, whether of his beloved West Cork or his garden in Hampshire, a vase on the breakfast table or a bouquet glimpsed in a Venetian florist’s shop. Every vital incident was pressed into the visual image. As the master-etcher, Norman Ackroyd, wrote that Crozier “even more than Hockney realised that making prints could simply be another and very beautiful way of drawing in colour.”
William Crozier (1930-2011) was born in Glasgow and educated at the Glasgow School of Art from 1949 to 1953. On graduating he settled in London where he established a reputation as one of the most avant-garde artists of his time through solo exhibitions at the ICA, Drian and Tooth Galleries. Crozier’s peripatetic life took him to Dublin and Paris in the 1950s, then to Andalusia in 1963, locations which were to prove central to his development as an artist. He became an Irish citizen in 1973 and from the early 1980s until his death in 2011 he had a long and successful exhibiting career, dividing his time between his homes in West Cork and Hampshire in the UK. He represented the UK and Ireland overseas and in 2017 the Irish Museum of Modern Art mounted a retrospective of his work in Dublin and Cork. His work can be seen in the Tate Gallery, the British Museum and the Imperial War Museum, as well as in the National Galleries of Ireland, Canada, Poland and Australia.