Linoleum or lino is the durable, rubbery floor covering that has been gracing kitchen floors since the turn of the 20th Century. But, this versatile and hardwearing material has a secret — it’s been masquerading for years as an artist! That’s right folks, welcome to the wonderful world of linocut.
Linocut is a form of printmaking. It first surfaced as an artistic technique in Germany in the early 1900s. While it was initially viewed as a cheap alternative to block printing with wood and metal, it quickly gained a notable following when big-name artists Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso started working with the material.
In simplified terms, linocut involves sketching and cutting patterns out of lino to create intricate designs that can then be transferred to paper and other materials. Although, you don’t need to be Picasso to get the hang of it, taking a class in the basics of linocut is a good idea given the need to work with sharp implements.