About my Prints

The prints from my student days at UCLA and in Florence during the years 1967-1981 consisted of etchings in black and white and in color. The subjects of these prints were interiors, street scenes, figures and landscapes. In the early 1970’s I produced a series of self-portraits that paid homage to German and Italian Renaissance portraiture using the technique of three-plate color etching. In the late 1970’s and early 80’s my prints became more abstract, combining landscape, with still-life, interiors, and figuration in a complicated metaphorical mix, characterized by an abundance of rich color and textural effects.

In 1985 I stopped producing etchings in favor of watercolor monotypes that permitted me to explore many more ideas due to the spontaneity of the medium. My first monotypes were based on the landscape near my Tuscan home in the Casentino valley. In spite of the rapidity that watercolor permits, my monotypes became evermore complex, requiring three plates and often as much as 25 hours each to produce.

I work naturally in series and my monotype method lent itself to an evolving group of images that often numbered between 50 and 100 variations. The series, “La Verna” and “Pratovecchio” are pure landscape, but the images gradually morphed into landscapes with architecture, as in the series, “Castiglioncello”, and “Pentimento”, after which the prints moved into pure architecture with wall paintings and decorative motifs. As if operating with a zoom lens the subject matter was drawn closer and closer to the viewer, eventually depicting manuscripts with texts and codes. During this period my technique changed very little, consisting of two watercolor Plexiglas plates followed by a third plate of rolled lithographic ink.

In the early 1990’s, when I became interested in the possibilities for computer generated prints I experimented with several methods of outputting images that were created on a 3-D animation program. Therefore the prints from 1993-1998 consist of waterless lithographs, solar plate intaglios, collotypes, and Gicleè prints. Finally I transformed some of the computer-generated ideas into hand-done watercolor monotypes, thereby coming full circle. Returning to monotypes the prints from 1990 to 2008 concentrated on elaborate renditions of manuscript and book-related images based on my long-standing interest in text, codes, and the effects of “Pentimento”.

In 2009 I returned abruptly to portraiture using the intaglio technique of “ImageOn”. Thus began my series, “Fictive Portraits”, (imaginary characters in an imaginary village), followed in 2011 by color monoprint portraits in which an intaglio plate is combined with two watercolor plates. These portraits begin as drawings and frottage on Mylar sheets in which I appropriate textures and features from engraved portraits on bank notes. This is a totally intuitive process in which I avoid any planning or preliminary sketches. I never know what character will result until a personality appears during the drawing process. The finished Mylar drawing is then exposed to the photosensitive ImageOn film that has been adhered to a plastic plate. In the case of the “Fictive Portraits” the ImageOn plate is printed on Unyru paper adhered to Stonehenge paper with the Chine Colle method in editions of 10 prints. Whereas the monoprint portraits are the result of one ImageOn plae and two watercolor plexi plates in varied editions of 4-6.
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Fictive Potraits

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Monoprint Portraits

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Monoprint 1985-2010

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Etchings

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Computer Generated Prints