Creative Fusion: The Allure of Surface Tension, Loreto Greve & Amber Ford, Cleveland Print Room


Loreto Greve came to my studio one afternoon, We played around with an old Epson Photo Scanner 2450, resulting in an odd but interesting series of self-portraits of her which morphed the otherwise attractive young artist into slightly grotesque and oddly shaped facial pictures. She was amused by the process.  “Another one,” she said after we loaded her portrait jpg into Photoshop and adjusted the color balance. “I need more teeth,” she said gleefully then pulled the black linen shirt that I gave her over her head to block out the light. We scanned for over an hour. With each scanned portrait, she pushed and pulled her facial muscles to contort the resulting image. She pointed to the lower section of her portrait. “We need more neck line here,” she said. “The face has to have a place to stand.” Of course, I new immediately what she meant – the portrait had to look like a portrait, however distorted. “It’s good,” she said finally. “I think we have it.” “Three more,” I said, and with that we scanned five or six more times. “It’s was fun,” she laughed. “I like the results a lot.”


Greve works this way. She engages with her collaborators, Her experience as a professional fashion model has been a valuable lesson in the give-and-take of collaboration. As an artist, she’s keenly aware of the role an inventor and explorer. Often, she is the subject of her work but not always. Exploring the physical world near her is central to her visual dialogue. She is a listener with an opinion. Most of her subjects are places she travels. But their association with a specific city isn’t strained; they demonstrate an affiliation with everything positive about transient living. A recurring theme in Greve’s work is the seductive and allure of surface tension.


During her residency at the Cleveland Print Room, Greve visited three schools and worked with 5th grade students at Lake Erie Ink, and 4th grade public school Walton and Scranton.  She worked with Lake Erie students one day a week, in collage, mural drawing and monoprints. She’s also produced a fascinating series of lithographs at Zygote Press.  Her work in the Cleveland Print Room included printing black and white photos from 35mm film in the dark room, using a variety of different cameras including a Leica and Rollei.  And if that weren’t enough, there’s the 16mm cinema film with Robert Banks that we’re all waiting to see and the self-portraits from the scanner in my studio.   A lot to look forward to from this otherwise auspicious artist from Chile.