03 April 2008
Tibetan Woodblock Proof
I couldn't resist taking a proof from the Tibetan woodblock I bought a couple of weeks ago. The block has ink residue on it, or perhaps has been treated, so that there's a waxy quality that repelled my water-based ink a bit, but I love how it looks. I found an internet site that describes the method of woodblock printing used in Tibet and it says that, like the Japanese and Chinese, Tibetans traditionally have used water-based inks.
In Tibetan language the woodblock is called parshing. Par means print and shing means wood. I believe that this design is called "The Wind Horse," although there seem to be two types of Wind Horse flags. One type has a horse in the middle and in the 4 corners are the four majestic mystical animals: the snow-lion, garuda, dragon and tiger. The other type has only prayers or mantras on it without the animals. This block seems to be a blend of the two, as it has both the 4 animals and some mantras, but no wind horse.
I have an idea for working with this block that I'll be starting tonight...