This project is a voluntary collaboration to the project of Prof Hilary Lorenz titled “Cross Pollination” (1). The project consist in collecting 40.000 moths created using several techniques, as long as the moths are made in black and white. I have decided to partecipate to this project after reading a post in a Facebook group named “Linocut friends”. To do so, I have drawn, carved and then printed two varieties of Italian moths: the Saturnia Pyri and the Parnassius Apollo. The former moth is the largest found in Italy, while the latter only lives in a specific area in Sicily (top and bottom images in Figure 1, respectively). Images were transferred into the linoleum and carved using a Pfeil L 11/0.5, Abig Linocutting tools with blades of V and U 2 mm shapes, Figure 2. Some trials of the moths were made prior to the printing, to test the drawing designs, Figures 3 and 4. Inkjet printing, Japanese and Fabriano papers were used.

The final moths were printed on two types of paper: the Fabriano and the Japanese papers, as shown in the below Figure 5. The former paper was used to produce 5 Saturnia Pyri and 6 Parnassius Apollo, while the latter paper was used to produce 4 Saturnia Pyri and 5 Parnassius Apollo. The images printed on the Fabriano Accademia 200 g/m2 paper were done using a manual press, while the images printed on the Japanese Washi 45 g/m2 paper were hand printed. In all cases the ink used was the black Aqua Linodruck Linoprint ink from Schmincke. In total 9 Saturnia Pyri and 11 Parnassius Apollo were produced.

Figure 5: moths ready to cross the Atlantic ocean

The moths will be sent to Prof Hilary Lorenz and they will be displayed from 19.08.2017 to 28. 10.2017 at 516 Arts (Albuquerque, NM), along with moths collected from around the world. The exhibition will then travel around the world, following the migration pattern originated by the people participating to the project.

To this previous batch of moths I have added a second batch made of 11 emperor moths (Saturnia pavonia) printed on washi paper using oil based ink Stay Open Dense Black from Hawthorn. These moths were cut from discarded prints made for the International Print Exchange, since they displayed defects in the printed surface. The linocut was made with Pfeil L 11/0.5.

Figure 6: Saturnia pavonia moths printed on washi paper