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Woodcut - Forty Fridas

Forty Fridas

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    USA (made)

  • Date:

    2011 (printed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Heck, Ellen, born 1983 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Colour woodcut and drypoint

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the artist

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level E, case MP, shelf 217A

Ellen Heck (born USA, 1983) is a printmaker based in California. ‘Forty Fridas’ is a series of prints depicting women and girls dressed as the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo (1907-54). On one level, these are intimate personal portraits, but the project as a whole addresses themes of identity, the multiple, individuality, and variation. By using printmaking, Heck has highlighted these concepts, which are referenced both in the subject matter and in the medium. The prints are a complex combination of drypoint and colour woodcut, time-consuming and challenging to produce. Each of the prints, made over a period of two years (2011-12), has been produced in a very small edition of between 5 and 10. Each of the prints in this set is number 2 from its respective edition.

The suite was selected for the 2014 International Print Biennale and exhibited at Northern Print in Newcastle as part of the Biennale exhibition. Heck was selected by Gill Saunders as the V&A Prize Winner at the Biennale.

Physical description

Colour woodcut and drypoint print, inscribed with edition number, title, signature and date in pencil.

Place of Origin

USA (made)


2011 (printed)


Heck, Ellen, born 1983 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Colour woodcut and drypoint

Marks and inscriptions

2/7 Alana as Frida Ellen Heck 11
Edition number; title; signature; date. All in pencil.


Height: 38 cm sheet, Width: 30 cm sheet

Descriptive line

'Alana as Frida' from 'Forty Fridas', 2012, a series of 40 woodcut and drypoint prints by Ellen Heck




Woodcut; Drypoint


Gender and Sexuality; Woodcuts

Production Type

Limited edition


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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