2016 residency artists
Peter Baczek with John Gruenwald
Receiving an Artist in Residency from the CSP in 2016 was a liberating experience for me. I have always relied on my own devices to create my prints and had recently revived my interest in lithography. My hopes were realized when I began this residency with John Gruenwald. I had arrived at his studio in San Francisco ready to go with a group of drawings and a rush to begin working. John met me with a small stone set out surrounded by the tools needed to make a mark and we began the collaboration. Working with a Master Printer was transformative for me in that I was free to work on resolving an image on the stone without concerning myself with the inherent complexities that are required to successfully transfer that image to paper.
John introduced me to rubbing ink which was applied directly to the stone or rubbed in with a rag. Instead of using crayons in the traditional manner on the stone, I was moving values around with rags, fingers, and blending stumps while defining edges with paper strips in a sort of “pochior” technique. I immediately embraced this somewhat free and unpredictable technique to define my typically refined images. With all the mark making tools available to the lithographer, rubbing inks present the most challenge in translating what the final impression will be compared to the image on the stone.
When I arrived that first day at the end of June, I finished a small drawing on the stone that John put before me. Once completed, he swept it away to be immediately replaced by another larger stone. While I worked on the second stone, John began processing the first stone to print. So it went for the second, third and fourth stones, a smooth movement of drawing, etching, proofing, reworking, and editioning. I was freed from the demanding processes to make a matrix press ready, and just concentrated on the image on the stone.
It was through this concert of artist and printer that four editions were produced by us in a relatively short period of approximately two months. Because of the rapport established between myself and John, I hope to work with him again in the future.
Deborah Sibony @ The W.O.R.K.S. with Thomas Wojak
The CSP Residency provided a valuable opportunity to work with a master printer, experiment with new techniques and evolve a body of work.
I have worked with a variety of printmaking processes however, had never tried screen printing. I currently work primarily with monotypes combined with a mix of other mediums. My process involves working with photographs which I take in urban and industrial landscapes. In particular, transitional landscapes which are in constant flux of construction and deconstruction and appear as quickly as they disappear.
What appealed to me about working with Thomas Wojack was the way in which he uses screen printing with his photographs as a basis for the imagery, building the composition in a thoughtful, experimental and intuitive way. This is similar to the way in which I wanted to work in this residency.
Thomas has a wealth of knowledge that he shares from years of experience working with this process. He explained all the steps in the screen printing process. My intention was to use my photos to create a composite abstracted image in Photoshop that could then be used as a screen to print from. The screens would provide the composition and structure for the print.
Thomas helped me to select four or five images that would yield the best results. We worked on creating screens from the images that could be used alone or together in one print. We printed in different colors and experimented with a variety of papers. We printed layers of the different screens in different combinations. In the end we were able to make multiple prints that I could then bring back to my studio to complete. Combined with drawing, relief and monotypes, I was able to create a visual language and cohesive body of work as well as experiment with new imagery and new ways of working.