World Printmakers’ Print Workshop Central

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grafisk værksted \ NÆSTVED, Denmark

with 9 comments

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Happy New Year 2009 – we hope – to all our friends

2008 – the 20th anniversary of our Print Studio for Artists:

2 projects – 4 exhibitions – 2 artists in residence

Naestved International Exhibition of Mini Prints

The first anniversary project was the Naestved International Exhibition of Mini Prints at Roennebakesholm Arts & Culture Center in March-April: 1.500 prints by 765 artists from 52 countries – in cooperation with Print Zero Print Exchange, Seattle, USA. Thanks to all the artists participating and donating their prints to a study archive of mini prints.

The opening session, the culmination of almost one year of preparation, was a success and it was a great honour for our Print Studio to have the Danish Minister of Culture / Secretary of Culture Brian Mikkelsen to open the exhibition together witt the Mayor of Naestved Henning Jensen.

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Pictures from the mini print exhibition

”Spor i det frie”

The next anniversary project was the publication of a limited edition art book with original photopolymer gravure prints by 20 members of our Print Studio.

The publication was followed up with two exhibitions of the fine-art prints, one at Naestved Museum in June-July and the other at Grafik I Väst in Gotheburg, Sweden, in September 2008.

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The exhibition at Naestved Museum …….. and in Gothenburg, Sweden From the FaellesVaerk exxhibition

FaellesVaerk-exhibition

The fourth exhibiton in 2008 was the the joint exhibiton by the four artist studios / workshops in the region, arranged by our Print Studio at Ronnebakesholm in November-December with prints, ceramics and sculptures in metal and bronze.

Artists in Residence

On top of this the Print Studio had two Artists in Residence:

in August Susan Walke from Kiel in Germany

and in December Karen Hibbard from Winnipeg in Canada

and one of our members, Jan Danebod, was in June invited to take part in the workshop Mako Natura in Makó, Hungary.

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Guest artists: Susan Walke from Germany and Karen Hibbard from Canada with Jan Kiowsky, studio manager

Edition Printing

Every year the Studio prints limited editions for art associations / clubs. In 2008 Jan Kiowsky, the studio manager, assisted with three editions:

an edition of 225 of two lithographs in five colours by Gunnar Saiets for Kosan Art Club

an edition of 70 of one lithograph in five colours by Poul Frederiksen

an edition of 75 of one lithograph in four colours by Simon J. Simonsen for the town of Vordingborg

81 Jan Kiowsky and Poul Frederiksen

Member of Print Studio Central

Our Print Studion has joined the World Printmakers’ Print Studio Central – look at http://printworkshopcentral. We would like to call upon all other Print Studios / Workshops to become members.

With the wishes for a good and busy New Year 2009 we also hope for a worldwide cooperation between print studios and workshops!

9 grafisk vaerksted \ NAESTVED – Print Studio for Artists

grafisk vaerksted \ NAESTVED

Sygestalden 15 C, Groennegades Kasernes Kulturcenter,

Groennegade 10, DK-4700 Naestved, Denmark

www.grafisk-kunst.dk , www.grafisk-kunst.org , grafisk-kunst@mail.dk

+45-55.73.7578 (Studio) & +45-61.10.97.41 (Jan Kiowsky, studio manager)

Editor: Torben Soeborg

January 2009

A small Print Studio for Artists in
South-Eastern Zealand, Denmark

The Print Studio, established in 1988, is situated in a beautiful old former military compound – now Groennegades Kaserne Cultural Centre – in the very centre of the provincial town Naestved in the south-eastern part of the Danish island of Zealand.

The Print Studio is a cooperative of artists interested in working seriously and professionally in printmaking. It provides facilities for a variety of printing techniques including etching, aquatint, engraving, lithography, photogravure, linocuts, woodcuts, computer graphics and other related processes. The five members of the Print Studio board are elected by the members for a two-year term.

Membership

Application for membership is considered by the Print Studio board. Members pay an annual fee of 150 DK kr (20 Euro) and have access to the facilities by agreement with the studio manager. They pay for the paper they use, as well as for photogravure, zinc and copper plates.

Premises and equipment

The Print Studio is small, about 75 square meters, but well equipped with a big electric litho press for stones, a good size intaglio & relief printing press, a small room for etching and aquatint, all necessary equipment for photogravure (solarplate printing), two PC computers with Adobe Creative Suite C2, an A3 size scanner and 3 inkjet printers – a Cannon for up to A4, an Epson for up to a 3+ and another Epson for up to A2 and paper rolls, both printing on 100% acid free fine-art cotton rag paper. The Print Studio has also a fully equipped kitchen and a small about 16 square meters guestroom with bath/toilet next door.

Workshops / courses

The Print Studio offers a variety of workshops for members and other professional artists: lithography (stones), photogravure, computer based prints and from time to time also dry point, etching and aquatints.

Exhibitions

The Print Studio does not have its own gallery or exhibition space but the members have the benefits of participating  in exhibitions arranged by the studio outside the Print Studio at different places in Denmark and from time to time also abroad.

Partners / Guest artists

The Print Studio works together with other workshops and studios in the region and abroad (such as Print Zero Studios in Seattle, USA, Green Door Open Access Printmaking Studio in Derby, UK and Grafik I Väst in Gothenburg, Sweden, Makó at Csóngrad, Hungary) with the purpose of exchanging knowledge and experience and allowing members of the cooperating studios to work as guest artists at grafisk vaerksted \ NAESTVED.

Artists in Residence

The Print Studio provides opportunities for printmaking artists from Denmark and also for artists from abroad to work at the studio as part of an Artist in Residence Programme. The Studio does not give grants/financial support to guest artists and artists in residence. Accommodation facilities and use of studio / workshop facilities are free but the artist must pay for the materials used.

Publishing

Besides designing and publishing catalogues for the Print Studio exhibitions the Print Studio also from time to time publishes books with reproductions of prints by members or with original (and signed) prints.

To celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2008 the Print Studio printed and published a limited edition book, “Frie spor I det aabne” (Free traces in the open), with signed photogravure prints by 19 members.

The book “Om grafik” (About prints) from 2001 you can see as a PDF file at the Print Studio website www.grafisk-kunst.dk .

Edition Printing

Every year the Studio prints limited editions for art associations / clubs.

International Mini Print Archive

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Studio in 2008 the Print Studio arranged Naestved International Mini Print Exhibition with well over 1.500 prints by 765 artists from 52 countries at Roennebaeksholm Art and Culture Centre. The exhibition was the first great manifestation of international mini prints in Denmark and was officially opened by the Danish Minister of Culture / Secretary of Culture. It was a unique possibility to experience Danish and international art of small scale printmaking in all its techniques and expressions.

The participating artists donated their prints to The International Study Archive of Mini Prints in Naestved, created by the Print Studio.

You can see all the mini prints at the Print Studio website www.grafisk-kunst.dk.

Newsletter

The Print Studio publishes a newsletter in Danish at irregular intervals–roughly every month – each issue with a presentation of a print by a member. The newsletter is send by email & snail mail to all members, Scandinavian print studios, local politicians and other interested people.

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An Interview with Torben Soeborg, International Coordinator of
grafisk vaerksted \ NAESTVED – Print Studio for Artists


Q: Your website says your studio was established in 1988 with “support from the county.” We’re also interested in knowing where the creative impulse came from. Who initiated the project and how?

A:  It all started a couple of years before when we still had the counties. Our county, Storstroems Amt, had initiated a so called arts committee with both artists and politicians. The politicians had when they visited Odense also been at Fyens Grafiske Vaerksted and wanted to create a similar studio in Storstroems County. They started together with the arts committee and Jan Kiowsky as primus motor to look for a possible space for a studio and the town of Naestved offered quite good possibilities at Groennegads Kasernne Cultur Centre in the very centre of the town. The county accepted the offer (although Naestved when it came to realities cut down a bit on the size of the space).

In 1988 the arts committee invited artists from the county to a statutory general meeting and it was decided that the Studio should be a cooperative of artists with a five member board and Jan Kiowsky as studio manager

The county offered substantial financial support to establish the studio and, up to the very end of their existence in January 1, 2007 were very helpful – the last financial support went to finance computer based printing equipment and support for publishing a book with signed original photogravure prints by 20 members.

Q:  I think it’s worthy of note that the workshop occupies a former military barracks. I am guessing from your address that an entire military base was converted into a cultural centre. How did that happen? Do you think you could export the experience?

A: There have been soldiers garrisoned in Naestved since 1684 and since 1700 it has been a cavalry regiment or the royal regiment of dragoons. The oldest part of the barracks in Groennegade is from 1799 and the building with the Print Studio is from around 1880. It was originally used as the stable for sick horses. In the end of the 1930’s the compound was too small and in 1940 a new big one was build in the outskirts of the town. In 1977 the military left Groennegade for good and the town took over the buildings as a cultural centre. More than 20 local organisations are housed in the buildings and the former big stables and drill ground are used for many activities like concerts, theatre, festivals, big meetings and so on.

I don’t know if we are able to export the experience, but we can certainly strongly support the idea to use former military buildings if they are located in the town  as cultural centres.

Q:  How many members does the workshop have? Do they have 24-hour access?

A:  We have 68 members – and if you don’t need the help of the master printer (the studio manager) you can have 24 hours access.

Q:  Though your workshop is small (70 square meters) you also have a one-room apartment for guest artists. Are they all printmakers, or do some other artists come to do collaborative work with your master printmakers?

A:  All the guest artists and artists in residence are printmakers or do only printmaking at the studio, but of course many of the artists, just like our members, also paint, make sculptures, ceramics, video art etc. Even if we would like to do collaborative work we still do not have space or financial means for that.

Q: The list of countries from which you have had artists in residence includes Lithuania, France, Hungary, Estonia, and Germany. Could you tell us a bit about these experiences. Does the practice live up to the theory? Does everybody benefit from these international cooperation programs?

A: We “screen” the artists before we accept to invite them as artists in residence – today mainly by getting CD/DVD with their work together with the application – and we ask them what they want to work with. In this way we try to make the experience as good as possible, both for the artist in residence and for our members. Sometimes we persuade the artist to work with other techniques. Since we only print litho using stones and not plates we talked a Canadian artist coming in December to try to learn how to make photogravure – a technique she had not tried before.

We hope that both the foreign artist and our members benefit from these programs, but of course it is perhaps sometimes a bit difficult for our members because of language problems.

Q: Please tell us the media in which grafisk vaerksted \ Naestved artists work. Is there a principal medium?

A: The three media most often used are lithographic printing (using stones), etching and photogravure. Which one you would call the principal medium changes from time to time. Computer-based ink jet printing is still a new medium for most of the artists.

Q: As grafisk vaerksted doesn’t have its own gallery, where do your artists exhibit? Do you have an agreement with a local gallery or galleries?

A: Many of our members have connections to galleries. The studio as such does not have agreements with galleries. We have the possibility from time to time to exhibit at Roennebaeksholm Arts and Culture Centre and then the studio makes arrangements with galleries both in Denmark and abroad (for example in Sweden, Germany, Hungary and Argentina) for in average two exhibitions per year. We are still hoping to get a small gallery in connection with the studio.

Q: With a small studio and many members it sounds as if it can get crowded in there. Do the members schedule their studio sessions very carefully so as to obviate this problem?

A: With the small studio it can easily be crowded. You can really not work more than three artists at a time and then it is best if they use different media. Therefore you have to make an appointment for using the studio with the studio manager and he will carefully schedule the use ahead of time.

Q: Please tell us a bit about your mini-print exhibition. How did it orginate? Is it an annual event? How many participants do you have?

A: In the beginning of 2007 the board talked about how to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the studio in 2008. At the general meeting in March 2007 it was decided that it should be with an international exhibition of mini prints and the above mentioned book with photogravure prints.

I got the idea for the mini print exhibition because I had participated a couple of times in the Print Zero Studio Print Exchanges. At the same time I found that the small prints, 20 x 20 cm unframed would be easy and not expensive for the artists to send  to us.

I searched the internet and other prints studios and associations for artists and in most cases invited them personally to take part free of charge with up to three mini prints. In August 2007 we had received but a few prints so I negotiated with Print Zero Studio in Seattle to get their last Print Exchange as part of our exhibition. They accepted – and from then on and until the deadline in November 2007 we kept getting prints and prints and prints. We ended up with 1.500 prints from 765 artists from 52 countries.

We were lucky to be able to exhibit at Roennebaeksholm Arts and Culture Centre, a beautiful situated old mansion belonging to the town of Naestved and we succeeded to get the Danish Minister of Culture / Secretary of Culture Brian Mikkelsen to open the exhibition together with the Mayer of Naestved Henning Jensen

We published a 36 pages catalogue in color with a picture of one prints from each participating artist , but you can see all the prints with info about the artists at our website www.grafisk-kunst.dk . All the artists got a catalogue free of charge.

All the artists (except those from Print Zero) donated their prints to a Study Archive of Mini Prints which will be placed at Roeennebaeksholm. Many artists asked us to repeat the exhibition as an annual event but we feel it would be too big a work load and not financial possible for a small studio.

Q: Let’s talk about printmaking? How do you see the “state of the art?” Are you optimistic about printmaking’s present and future?

A:  With the global financial crises many galleries have a hard time and are cutting down on the number of artists connected to the gallery. On the other hand we had quite good sales at our two last exhibitions, one in Denmark and one in Sweden.

There seems to be an upcoming renaissance for some of the older printing techniques like litho and even mezzotint and wood engraving which I think we should support through courses for our members at the studio.

Q: Are you-and by extension your printmakers-concerned about competition from people who do digital reproductions and call them “limited-edition fine-art prints?” What do you think might be done about that problem, if anything?

A: It has not been a problem up to now at least in Denmark. We had problems with the mini print exhibition where it was quite clear that a German artist and three Italians had send us prints where we could check that they were digital reproductions of bigger paintings. Anyhow you might have the same problem with offset lithos where it could be difficult to see if they are genuine prints or reproductions.

Since I myself recently has been working quite a lot with digital inkjet prints I would like to discuss it with other artists working the same way.

Q: Is there anything you would like to add? This is the place to do it.

A: I would very much like to discuss the animosity you often meet, especially among American print galleries, curators of print exhibition or other print events like most the organizers of Print Exchange events – an animosity against digital prints. In almost all cases they won’t accept digital prints. I feel I don’t meet the animosity to the same degree in Europe. It concerns of course the question: What is an art print? When is a print an original, genuine print – a real, original work of art?

IFPDA – International Fine Art Dealers Association asks the question on their website (www.printdealers.com ). Their answer is: An original print is a work of art on paper which has been conceived by the artist to be realized as a print rather than as a photographic reproduction of a work in another medium.

This definition covers all types of prints – not only the old, well known techniques (many of those were also new ones and looked upon with scepticism) but also all other printing techniques.

IFPDA has made clear regarding digital prints that: The distinction as to whether a digital print is an “original print” is determined by whether the work was created by the artist to be realized as a print. A digital print of a work that originated as a painting or drawing is a reproduction and therefore is not an original print.

I find these statements quite clear and I think all sceptical curators and organizers should accept this.

Contact:

Jan Kiowsky, Studio manager
Torben Soeborg, International coordinator
Tel: +45-55.73.75.78 (the Studio) &  +45-61.10.97.41 (mobile)
Sygestalden 15 C
Groennegades Kaserne Kulturcenter
DK-4700 Naestved, Denmark
grafisk-kunst@mail.dk
www.grafisk-kunst.dk

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Written by Michael Booth

October 6, 2008 at 7:26 am

9 Responses

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  1. hi
    im prathapmodi,from India ,i want to know ,any print making recedinces,work shops ,and exhibitions ,i like to partspaing ,

    thank you
    regards
    prathap modi

    prathhap modi

    April 28, 2009 at 9:24 pm

  2. Hallo!
    Please send me informations about printing in your studios.
    atb zoran

    zoran ogrinc

    May 30, 2009 at 7:30 pm

  3. Hi, Please send me info. regarding print exhibitions and open submissions for graphic prints.

    Great site!

    Mike Haskett, Sweden

    Mike Haskett

    October 14, 2009 at 9:47 am

    • Hej Mike Haskett
      We are just in the beginnign af 2010 starting a small gallery, but we do not have open submissions.
      Hilsen
      Torben Soeborg

      Torben Soeborg

      November 27, 2009 at 11:41 pm

  4. hi, Please include me on your mailing list and notices for open submissions. Great site.

    Best,

    Mike Haskett

    Mike haskett

    October 14, 2009 at 10:04 am

    • Hej Mike – agsin
      To include you on our mailing list we need your e-mail adress – please mail it to grafisk-kunst@mail.dk .
      I hope you read Swedish / Danish bevause all ouur newsletters are in Daniish
      Hilsen
      Torben Soeborg

      Torben Soeborg

      November 27, 2009 at 11:44 pm


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