Inspiration behind Melanie Jackson's Cerro Rico mountain prints


Having worked with Jackson in the past, The Arts Catalyst were keen to feature her work which scrutinises the ways objects influence, socialise, or empower us, through sculpture, comic book sequences, moving image and print. The combination of material transformation, myth fabrication, and political commentary, makes these prints a beautifully complex work of art, dripping in silver crystals, ore and ink.

The prints, specially commissioned for the campaign, are inspired by Cerro Rico – a mountain in the Andes near the Bolivian city of Potosí. It is the world's largest silver deposit and has been mined since the 16th century.

Cerro Rico was famous for providing vast quantities of silver for Spain during the period of the New World Spanish Empire. It was home to the colonial royal mint, la Casa de la Moneda, which spawned the first global currency upon which the original United States dollar was based. The mountain made Potosí become one of the largest cities in the New World. It is also hauntingly referred to as the 'mountain that eats men' because of the large number of workers who have died in the quest for silver.

Melanie is a winner of the Jerwood Drawing Prize and has prints in the Government and Tate art collections.

Please get in contact with The Arts Catalyst if you would like to see a high-resolution impression of Melanie’s prints. These prints are exclusive to the Art Happens campaign.

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