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Frans Wesselman

Frans Wesselman has always had an interest in art, which started with the pictures, often cut from magazines, that his mother pinned up around the house. Growing up in The Hague, the etchings of Rembrandt and The Hague School were around and were a great source of inspiration for Frans, before he even when to Art College. After qualifying as an Art teacher and his military service completed, Frans left for Ireland and eventually ended up in Britain, where he joined the Royal Society of Painter-Print makers. He is now also a member of the British Society of Master Glass Painters.

His work reflects his interest in the human form and human relationships. Some pieces are based on poems and literature; some are directly from observation and imagination. The initial ideas are worked out in scribbles in his sketchbooks. Once he has a basic composition, he starts gathering drawings of the various parts, landscape maybe or sketches of buildings or animals. He draws from life, using a model, but also draws people in the street or uses mirrors to work out positions and details of hands for instance. For etchings and stained glass, he makes quite precise working drawings, for painting much less so. For his colour prints, he first makes the etched plate, print and off-set this onto ply, which he then cuts up like a jigsaw puzzle to print the colour from. In the final print, the colour is printed first, the etching over the top of it.

In 2009, he was commissioned to make designs for the Cultural Olympics project that became “Godiva Awakes”, based in Coventry. This took place over seven days at the beginning of August 2012 when a six-meter tall puppet of Godiva was cycled from Coventry to Waltham Forest.