Marble Matter hosts a range of workshops focalizing liquid surface design techniques.
We are intrigued by processes whose aestetic cannot be entirely controlled. It is rather the job of the artist/student to embrace the elements of randomness while gently manipulating expressions in desired ways. We always encourage our students to play around and not get too hung up by what is traditionally “right and wrong”.
It usually resolves in great results, even for beginners!
We currently teach both Ebru and Suminagashi on respectively paper and fabric. During both types of workshops you will learn about the history of the marbling techniques, how to set up a marbling station at home an you will of course leave with your own marbled pieces. The learning curve in both Ebru and Suminagashi is steep and we find that both kids and adults enjoy the mesmerizing act of dropping paint onto a liquid surface. The process is even meditative to some. All workshops have a limited number of students in order to ensure a firendly and artistically experimental environment where we can offer support and insight to every student. As we are based in Barcelona and Copenhagen the workshops are mainly held in these locations. We are nevertheless always interested in teaching in new environments.
We host marbling workshops on
both paper & textiles
What is marbling?
Marbling is an umbrella term for aqueous surface design techniques. It essentially means you can create a pattern by dropping paint onto a liquid surface. There are two main branches of the art; Turkish Ebru and Japanese Suminagashi.
Ebru patterns are swirly and colorful, while Sumihashi patterns mostly display black concentric circles. While the two marbling techniques share similarities with other print-making techniques, the concept of transferring paint from a liquid surface to paper and fabric is fundamentally different. Water is in constant flux and it is impossible to fix the paint in specific positions. It rather swirls and rolls on the waves of the water creating fleeting moments of beauty,
which is exactly why we love these mediums.
Ebru - Turkish style marbling
Ebru essentially means "cloud" in Turkish, probably because the floating paint resemble clouds slowly moving across the sky. You have probably seen plenty of Ebru patterns without realising it, as Ebru printed paper was the fashion in book binding up until the turn of the century. Ancient marblers developed techniques that allowed them to repeat an array of patterns on spines, linings and covers of books. Our work, however, looks a bit different than the traditional expressions. Not only have we adapted the materials to a contemporary context, our interest is also not in perfect repetition, but rather the technique’s ability to capture a flash of time. Our curiosity is intrigued by what happens when you leave the marbling tray to itself. Maybe you made a 'classic' print and some paint residual pigments are left on the surface, could those randomly positioned pigments be salvaged and reveal a moment of beauty? Or how long does it take 'time' to shape a beautiful pattern? Sometimes we even add fresh drops of paint onto a 'dirty' tray to see how the new and the old colors interacts. (below you find examples of our work)
Suminagahsi – Japanese marbling
Suminagashi means “spilled ink” in Japanese and it differs from Turkish marbling in three distinct ways. Firstly, Suminagashi is done on water rather than a thickened liquid. Secondly, the inks traditionally used in Suminagahsi are calligraphy inks made from pine soot, while the Ebru technique allows a range of materials such as gauche, water color and acrylics. Finally the inks are carefully applied to surface by creating concentric circles while in Ebru color is splashed onto the tray. These concentric circles can be manipulated with wind, vibrations and movement creating transient patterns, which can be perpetuated by Japanese paper or fabric with high thread count.
Take a look at one of our marbling workshops.
Want to start marbling right away?
Since 2015 we have been working with various marbling techniques, and throughout the process, written down our observations and experiences. Based on our discoveries, we have created these guides for those of you, who would like to endeavour into the world of marbling.
Click here to find out more
When is the next workshop?
Find out when and where our next workshop is taking place by visiting our shop. We advertise the upcoming workshops on Instagram and on our Facebook-page. If you want to be amongst the first to know, you can sign up to our newsletter below to stay updated and never miss out!
I can't buy a ticket. Why?
We only have a limited number of tickets available for each workshop, since we want to keep the group of participants small. In that way we ensure that there is plenty of time to ask questions and to get help along the way. We therefore recommend you to get your ticket as soon as possible.
Do you host private workshops?
Yes, we do! If you want to celebrate a birthday in a creative way, host a fun and colourful event or simply want to invite your own group of marbles to a given location, we arrange private workshops - both here in Copenhagen and elsewhere. Please email us if you'd like to know more!