INTAGLIO by Winston Torr @ 55 limited | Sept. 11 – Oct. 24, 2014

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ENGLISH
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

“INTAGLIO”
An exhibition by WINSTON TORR

Artist Winston Torr presents a new body of work of prints
using the Soap Ground technique.
Works are on display at 55 limited Printmaking & Gallery, Berlin.

Reception: Thursday, September 11, 2014, starting at 7:00 pm
Exhibition: September 12 to October 24, 2014
Opening times: Wednesday to Saturday, 2:00 – 7:00 pm.
Location: Feurigstraße 62, 10827 Berlin
Contact: Peter Th. Mayer, info@55ltd.net
030-78.89.34.98 / 0175-528.67.56

(Berlin, September 1, 2014) – Berlin-based artist Winston Torr starts this season more ambitiously than ever. Having been awarded an Artist-in-Residency at 55 limited Kupferdruckwerkstatt & Galerie, an Intaglio printmaking studio in Berlin-Schöneberg, Torr delved into the multifaceted medium of copper printmaking. Curated by Carlota Ibañez de Aldecoa Silvestre, the resulting prints will be presented from September 12 to October 24, 2014 in the workshop’s gallery.

“Intaglio” features twenty-one brand new etchings printed from copper plates, using the rare “soap ground” technique, combined with line etching. Each individual work is hand inked and printed on the studio’s hand-driven Intaglio press. The edition is strictly limited to seven prints of each motif, signed and numbered, executed on high-quality Somerset paper.

The development of a “soap ground” print is laborious. Up to twelve hours might pass until an image emerges. “It is a long and intricate process but definitely worth the energy put into it,“ Torr states. “In our current society, we usually want things to be produced quickly and automatically, with a click of a button, out of learned habit. I picked up printmaking for I am lucky enough that there are still people who appreciate workmanship and places where manual work is estimated and not frowned upon. This is a rarity in this digital age. I take great pleasure in every creative step, in conjunction of a world of quick ‘readymade’ Art.”

Born in Toronto, Canada, Winston Torr grew up in Los Angeles, California. His background is multi-ethnic: Mongolian, Chinese, and Korean. He has participated in numerous national and international exhibitions, such as: “Drawing Connections” at the Siena Art Institute, founded by Paul Getty III; “Sublime” at Fellini Gallery, Berlin; “Transporter” at Mercedes-Benz Gallery, Ravensburg; “GLAAD” charity art auction at the Metropolitan Institute, New York; and Sotheby’s Vienna. This solo show at 55 limited establishes Winston Torr as a serious and polytalented artist.

“Soap ground” is one of the so-called “wet” techniques in Intaglio printmaking; it involves an acid that bites into the metal. A mixture of soap, white pigment and linseed oil is applied onto the copper plate with a brush. Once the drawing is finished, the plate is covered with an aquatint, a fine layer of dust, which is essential to create tonality. Melted by a flame onto the copper, this dust will create little spots that hold the ink. Depending upon the quantity of soap ground applied, the acid will then bite into the copper. Thus, the soap ground can be considered the most “painterly” way to create a print. Torr has mastered this technique in a very short time.

55 limited, established in Summer 2012, is an intaglio printmaking workshop and gallery specializing in small, limited editions (no more than 55 prints), photo-mechanical processes (in particular, photogravure), and limited-edition artists’ books. It regularly offers residencies, workshops, and free introductory lessons in Intaglio printmaking.

 

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DEUTSCH
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Zur sofortigen Veröffentlichung

„INTAGLIO“
Ausstellung von WINSTON TORR

Der Künstler Winston Torr präsentiert neue Druckgrafik /
Seifengrundradierungen.
Die Arbeiten werden bei 55 limited Kupferdruck & Galerie gezeigt.

Vernissage: Donnerstag, 11. September 2014, ab 19:00 Uhr
Ausstellung: 12. September bis 24. Oktober, 2014
Öffnungszeiten: Mittwoch bis Samstag, 14:00 – 19:00 Uhr
Lage: Feurigstraße 62, 10827 Berlin
Kontakt: Peter Th. Mayer, info@55ltd.net,
030 – 78.89.34.98 / 0175 – 528.67.56
(Berlin, 1. September 2014) – Der in Berlin ansässige Künstler Winston Torr beginnt die neue Kunstsaison ambitionierter denn je. Nachdem er eine Arbeitsresidenz bei 55 limited Kupferdruck & Galerie erhielt, hat Torr dort mehrere Monate mit der Erkundung des vielschichtigen Mediums des Tiefdruckes verbracht. Kuratiert von Carlota Ibañez de Aldecoa Silvestre, werden die daraus entstandenen Grafiken ab dem 12. September in der Galerie der Werkstatt ausgestellt.

„Intaglio“ (der englische Begriff für Tiefdruck) zeigt 21 neue Radierung von Kupferplatten, bei denen die so genannte Seifengrund-Technik, kombiniert mit Strichätzung, angewandt wurde. Jeder einzelne Druck ist mit der Hand eingefärbt und mit der studioeigenen handgetriebenen Presse gedruckt. Die Auflage ist strikt auf sieben Exemplare limitiert, unterzeichnet und nummeriert und auf hochwertigem Somerset Papier ausgeführt.

Die Entwicklung eines Seifengrunddruckes ist sehr arbeitsaufwändig. Bis zu zwölf Stunden können vergehen bis das Motiv sich herausbildet. „Es ist ein langer und komplexer Vorgang, jedoch lohnt sich die Energie, die man hineinsteckt, in jedem Falle,“ stellt Torr fest. „In unserer gegenwärtigen Gesellschaft wollen wir doch üblicherweise, dass die Dinge schnell produziert werden, mit einem Knopfdruck, so jedenfalls sind wir es gewohnt. Ich habe mir den Tiefdruck ausgesucht, da ich das Glück habe, dass es immer noch Menschen gibt, die das Handwerk anerkennen, und Orte, an denen manuelle Arbeit geschätzt und nicht mit Stirnrunzeln bedacht wird. In diesen digitalen Zeiten ist das eine Seltenheit. Ich gewinne große Freude aus jedem schöpferischen Schritt, im Zusammentreffen mit einer Welt der „ready-made“ Kunst.“

In Toronto, Kanada, geboren, wuchs Winston Torr in Los Angeles auf. Sein Hintergrund ist multiethnisch: Mongolei, China, Korea. Er hat an zahlreichen Ausstellungen im In- und Ausland teilgenommen. So etwa der „Drawing Collection“ des von Paul Getty III gegründeten Siena Art Institute, „Sublime“ bei der Fellini Galerie, Berlin, „Transporter“ bei der Mercedes-Benz Galerie, Ravensburg, der „GLAAD“ Wohltätigkeitsauktion am Metropolitan Institute in New York oder bei Sotherby’s, Wien. Diese Einzelausstellung bei 55 limited etabliert Winston Torr als ernst zu nehmenden und vielfältigen Künstler.

„Seifengrund“ ist eine der so genannten „nassen“ Techniken des Tiefdruckes – Säure ist an der Entstehung der Grafik beteiligt. Eine Mischung aus Seife, weißen Pigmenten und Leinöl wird dabei mit dem Pinsel auf die Kupferplatte aufgetragen. Sobald die Zeichnung abgeschlossen ist, wird die Platte mit einer Aquatinta bestäubt, eine Schicht feinen Staubes, notwendig um Tonalität zu erzeugen. Mit einer Flamme wird dieser Staub auf das Kupfer aufgeschmolzen. Je nachdem wie viel Seifengrund auf die Platte aufgetragen wurde, ätzt die Säure mehr oder weniger tief in das Metall. Somit kann diese Technik als die wohl „malerischte“ gelten, um einen Druck zu erschaffen. Torr hat diese Technik in kurzer Zeit gemeistert.

55 limited ist eine im Sommer 2012 gegründete Kupferdruckerei in Berlin-Schöneberg, die sich auf Editionen kleiner Auflage (maximal 55 Exemplare), Edeldruckverfahren (Heliogravüre, Fotoradierung etc.) und limitierte Künstlerbücher spezialisiert. Regelmäßige Künstleraufenthalte, Workshops und freie Einführungen in den Tiefdruck werden angeboten.

 

Soap Ground Intaglio Printmaking Process

In this post, I would like to show you

how I got from A to B in my Soap Ground Intaglio Printmaking Experience.
Printmaking is a traditional way to make hand inked print.

At 55 limited intaglio printmaking residency,
I created Soap Ground Intaglio Etchings for the majority of the residency work.
for infos on the residency, click here.

Read on and discover Soap Ground Intaglio!
Here is how I went from this A (a normal sheet of copper) to B (a hand inked Intaglio Print)
soap ground, soap, intaglio, process, hand inked print, copper

This particular piece took about 12 hours to make, working non-stop.

In order to understand the process, i took pictures every step of the way.

First of all, copper plates do not come smooth. The plate must be sanded.
here is a look at the copper when it is bought.

Process3

 

The copper plate is first sanded using sandpaper:

Process4

 

then a Micro Metal Sponge is used in circular motion.

Process5

 

and lastly, polish:

Process7

 

Why does the surface of the copper plate need to be sanded? Answer: For the overall plate tone.

 

next comes degreasing, in order to prepare for Soft Grounding, before Soap Grounding and Aquatint. I will explain what these are with each step.

 

Degreasing: a mixture of chalk powder, ammonia, and water is used to wash the copper plate.
Why Degrease? so the soft ground, hard ground, and aquatint rosin will adhere better.
What is soft ground, hard ground, and aquatint rosin? Will explain later.

Process8

Process9 Process10 Process11 Process12 Process13 Process14 Process15 Process16

 

Now apply a Soft Ground.

What is a Soft Ground? it is a mainly used for tracing a pattern on the copper plate and then etching it with Ferrid Acid afterwards.
the reason why i do this is before I like a pattern before starting the Soap Ground. Soft Grounding creates softer yet rougher lines, almost like a charcoal effect.
Soft Ground is a mixture of rosin, beeswax, tallow, and asphaltum.

What is Hard Ground? same rolling method as Soft Ground, different product and effect. lines are crisper and the product is harder. It is a mixture of rosin, beeswax, and asphaltum.
We will stick to Soft Ground on this project because this is the look I desire, rough yet soft, like the look of Charcoal.

Soft Ground application on copper plate:

Process17 Process18 Process19 Process20

 

 

 

Now that the Soft Ground is ready, it is ready to be drawn on top, using a thin piece of see through paper.
Once the pencil presses on it, the pressure of the soft ground sticks to the back of the paper. Here is how it looks:

Process21 Process22 Process23 Process24

 

Now comes the Ferrid Acid Bath soaking for about 10 minutes to etch a light outline of the motif:

Process24b

 

then clean the soft ground up with Terpentine.

Process24c

 

here we have it cleaned. as you can see the Ferric Acid etched (bite) to see the lines.
Etching is a word used in Printmaking when the Ferric Acid eats, or “bites”, into the copper plates.
Now I have a base on where to add the Soap Ground.
Again I will Degrease the plate, to prepare for the Soap Ground and Aquatint.

Process25

 

Now the Soap Ground begins. This process took me about 5 hours. one may take shorter time, longer time. It really depends on personal preference on which the imagery is to be achieved.

What is Soap Ground?
Soap ground is a mixture of linseed oil, titanium white dry pigment, soap, and water.
it is used to create textures.
when applied to copper, the thicker and whiter the soap ground, the lighter it will become when printed. The more copper showing, the more darker this becomes in the print.

Here is when I started to paint the Soap Ground.

Process27

 

close up after some hours.
Process28a

 

here is how my layers of Soap Ground after 5 hours working on a hot plate.
Process28

 

 

Now comes the Aquatint.

What is Aquatint?
they are little tiny marks so the plate is able to hold ink.
Ground up Rosin is used and distributed from a cloth sack.
Process29

Now comes the firing to melt the aquatint (rosin) on the copper plate.

Process30

 

 

seen under a magnifying glass, this is how the aquatint should look like after melted.

Process30a

 

 

Aquatint is a rosin powder put on after the soap ground to make the copper plate grab ink, after the acid etches it.

What is Etching?
Etching is when an Acid like Ferric Acid in which bites into the copper.
“Bite” is a term that means that the Acid is eating through the copper, dissolving, melting, etc.

There are many methods (terms( to create printmaking pieces. spit bite, sugar lift, and i have tried a couple of them. The one that I feel closer to are Soap Ground, and Aquatint, because the effects are very dramatic, and takes layers and hours to create.

The next step is to put the Copper plate with the Soap Ground and Aquatint into a Ferrid Acid bath for 45 minutes. This is the time i prefer.

Process31

this is the guideline I made to see how the aquatint look like at at every minutes listed,
after each Ferric Acid Bath.

intaglio-guide

clean up the Soap Ground and Rosin using Turpentine or hardcore chemicals.

Process34 Process33 Process32

 

this is how it looks like cleaned up, and now it is ready to be inked for printing. Finally!!!

Process35

 

Inking:

Process36Process37Process38

 

next use a Large net sponge to push inks in grooves, in circular motion:

Process39

then use paper to take off extra ink from top surface only.
Process40

 

tissue paper to take extra traces of ink off from surface.
Process41

a small soft net sponge to lightly make sure the ink on the surface is even.
Process42

 

 

now comes the chalk wipe,
just go lightly above the surface, and along the edge of the copper plate, carefully not to disturb the ink.

Process43 Process45
Ready to print, finally!!!

This is an Etching press, very old school.
the inked plate is layed upside.

Process46


then comes the paper on top.

Process47

Roll the machine.

Process48

here is a video clip i made to see a demonstration of how the intaglio press works and rolls at 55 limited.

after rolling, the other side, the paper may be lifted to reveal the printed ink.
Process49

The original print, drying.
Process50

 

so thats it!

all this totalled 12 hours!

it was sooo worth it! 🙂

 

Prints from Intaglio Printmaking are original prints, and are usually numbered with Editions. Mine editions are stricted limited to 7.

Go back to Intaglio Page