NATURE SHORT 6- Jo Lathwood

Published on: 
20 May 2020

Artist Jo Lathwood shares how to make a traditional old ink called Oak Gall Ink (or Iron Oak Ink).

This ink is unique as it is lightfast and does not fade in sunlight like many natural inks. The Dead Sea Scrolls, original bank notes and numerous medieval manuscripts were written in Oak Gall Ink.

The oak gall is made by a parasitic wasp which changes the acorn into a host where another wasp can grow. These galls contain tannin, which is one of the main components needed to make the ink.

In 2014, on a residency at Hestercombe Gallery, Jo made a small publication about her research including a gall identification poster, recipe and a history of Oak Gall Ink. Cost £3 plus P&P. Please contact Jo Lathwood or THG: for more info.

Watch the video 

© Jo Lathwood

Part of Culture + Climate 2020 in partnership with East Devon AONB, NATURE SHORTS is an online series showcasing art practices which inspire, build creativity and deepen our connection with nature especially during isolation. Every Wednesday, May to June. Next NATURE SHORT: Wednesday 27 May.

Jo Lathwood