“Seventeen (Magicicada)” began with a semi-abstracted linocut of a periodical cicada. Once carved, the block was hand-printed on cotton and muslin using water-based Speedball printmaking ink.
After printing, each image was then cut to form, arranged with other fabric onto a recycled fabric background, and stretched and secured over canvas stretcher bars. The cicadas were each hand-sewn onto the background with care. Some of the prints have been given a 3-D modeled effect by placing quilt batting behind the image.
This collection is inspired by the incredible Magicicada, seventeen-year cicada, whose Brood X emerged in Spring 2021 all over the Midwest. I have always loved the idea of the cicada, living below ground for months—or in the Magicicada’s case, years—only to emerge and spend a too-short time bumbling and screaming above ground with us. It’s a story of resurrection—the kind of story we all desperately need in our 21st century world.
While the cicadas have been going through their strange cycle in 2020-2021, I have also been writing a new biography of the Kentucky artist, writer, and sustainability pioneer, Harlan Hubbard. He loved cicadas, too, and I will leave you with one of his incredible meditations on them (he, like many of us, called them “locusts” before we knew better):
“This is the year of the Seventeen Year locust, and should be somehow commemorated, for a few of these cycles span a man’s life […] When they come forth again, they will see changes in the face of the earth, hear new voices speaking of great events that we do not know of now.”
-Harlan Hubbard, June 1936
When the Magicicada of Brood X return to us in 2038, what will they see?
The price of “Seventeen (Magicicada)” includes the shipping and handling to U.S. Domestic addresses via the USPS. THIS ITEM WILL BE AVAILABLE TO SHIP AFTER 1/15/2022. IF YOU ARE AN INTERNATIONAL CUSTOMER, PLEASE CONTACT ME FOR A SHIPPING QUOTE. INTERNATIONAL SHIPMENTS WILL REQUIRE ADDITIONAL $$ FOR SHIPPING AND CUSTOMS.