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Open-air printing artist

Text: Yoshiko Nagai


For artist Anna Orbovich, trekking and printing are two things inseparable. Using the mountains of her home state of Minnesota, Iceland, and Scandinavia as her studio, she creates drawings and prints of the contours of nature, which she then traces with her own body when she embarks on her next trip.
Before the pandemic began, her last studio was in the Atacama Desert, on the border between Bolivia and Chile. The sun burns your skin as it passes through the crisp air with no humidity, the ground is dry and the shade is as cold as the dead of winter. We sometimes came across oases in the midst of all this, where the water reflected the light and shrouded the air.

In the Atacama Desert, she wanted to try her hand at “blueprinting” (cyanotype). The motifs she chose were stones and flowers that barely grew in the area. The paper is carefully wrapped in black plastic and a box in her backpack to prevent it from becoming photosensitive. There is no control over how the silhouette reflects on the paper. These abstract paintings, which capture the momentary contact between light and natural objects on paper, are for her a work of art and a reminder of the atmosphere of a place.

Yoshiko Nagai
She became an independent curator, after having worked for a company planning and producing cultural activities. She connects creators, artworks, and audiences by creating and communicating values in a way that suits the environment. She is the author of “Out of line,” an exhibition by Alison Turnbull (2020, Tokyo), and the booklet Materia Prima, which is published irregularly.

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