Finished and on display at the annual local Waikino Labour Weekend Art Exhibition. This press has a 20 inch by 34 inch bed with felts cut to match. It is made from a restored and modified antique mangle about 110 years old. Built to last.. Enquiries; firstname.lastname@example.org :)
I have two of these to build. This one has 20 inch wide rollers and bed and is here having final fit and finish in the studio. I have had the original antique for a long time and at last it is being transformed into a useful machine again. It is well over an hundred years old. It was working three generations before I arrived and will be working in a print studio somewhere long after I am gone..
Sue Marshall's new press at her home in Arrowtown, Otago. Below, at my studio prior to shipping to Sue in the South Island. Crating it up and finding a courier was a big job in itself but all part of the fun..
This press was bought on an online auction by Jo, a graphic designer, who arranged for me to pick it up for her and restore it. She lives and works down in the Wairarapa and the press was in Hamilton not for from me.. So here it is, safe and sound at Classic Etching Presses casualty word getting Dr John's TLC. She is dirty rusty and missing many bits and pieces. A couple of weeks in Classic Etching Presses casualty ward and we have a complete recovery.. Posing for a pic in the studio and then working in Jo's studio
This press is being created for Sue Marshall, an Arrowtown, Otago print maker. Otago is at the bottom of the South Island of New Zealand so a long way to go. It will have to be dis-assembled and crated for the journey when Sue is ready for it.
On the left a converted Phoenix mangle with cast iron frames, the most common of these antiques and our best seller, this particular one promised to a New Zealand print maker and on the right three Victorian steel tube framed mangle conversions, one with planetary gearing and 28 inch rollers. All these beauties are awaiting the fitting of press bed frames, native timber press bed runners and the beds and felts and new homes in working print studios..
The first print on the press in Katie's studio. Katie used a finished reduction woodcut at my studio when picking the press up to assure herself that the single central pressure screw and leaf spring spread the pressure evenly. It does...You can read Katie's story of the creation of the press here:
Just assembled in Katie's studio Friday evening after she drove down to Waihi and together we dis-assembled it and stowed it all carefully in her vehicle. Katie watched and photographed the dis-assembly so to learn how to easily reassemble it herself on getting it home. All the presses are made to be easy to dis-assemble and reassemble for the purpose of transport and getting up or down stairs and through narrow doors.
The press in my studio a few days before Katie came to get it after all the painting etc. was finished and about to be assembled. This particular press was created out of two antique mangles that Katie supplied, some missing parts were supplied by me to make one whole press and the other antique Katie supplied was made into a funky mobile table. Katie's press is intended only for wood and lino cuts in a busy teaching environment and so much cost was saved by not sleeving the rollers in steel and retaining the original single pressure screw and spring set up. Later, if Katie wishes to go into intaglio etc., the rollers could be sleeved in steel and double pressure screws created but for now it is just fine
The press is almost finished and now there is paperwork for Customs clearance at Chicago Airport and the crate to be built and then off to the big bird at Auckland Airport and into Kris's studio in Indianapolis. Sounds easy, kinda is but takes some time..
This press is going to a print maker in Indianapolis. It is being made from scratch from an antique style that Kris chose. I have not converted one of this particular style before and it has it's own challenges which makes life interesting.. The casting of the frames is slightly curved at the back and I must fit frames to it without a curve; straight and parallel. The job is keeping me on my toes, best foot forward and all that - how one can be on one's toes and have the best foot forward at the same time is a puzzle I shall no doubt enjoy solving... Do stay tuned for the next installment of...
Building a crate as light and as strong as possible around a heavy cast iron press was in itself a creative job
Then driving it up to Auckland airport early on a Monday morning through Auckland traffic was a test of my patience. I'm afraid I got a low score, patience is not one of my gifts.. Three days later Mikala has it delivered to her studio on a barge in a Copenhagen Canal. Job done
And here is Mister Press in place in Mikala's floating studio, assembled and ready to work.
The free standing press above is sold to a Danish artist, Mikala Valeur and I have been busy crating it for the flight from Auckland to Copenhagen via Emirates Freight. Building the crate for it and having it protected from any possible shock or harm has been this week's creative journey. I like doing things I have never done before and this one was "How the hell am I going to get that as small as possible and as light as possible and protected to survive a fall from a forklift onto concrete as a worst case scenario" type of gig. Each night I have gone to bed with some unsolved problem in the next step of the crating and protection of the press and each morning as I lay in half sleep/half awake mode the perfect idea comes to me for that day's work. That experience, that unfolding, has been very interesting and I felt that I was being led or that I had managed to allow my subconscious to work properly instead of my (former) stress and worry routine. I have had to use all of my brain and quite enjoyed the experience and I greatly admire Mikala's faith in me which is cool. Her art work is awesome also, check it out at 100percentvaleur, the name of her site
Two Japanese Shin Nihon Zokei table top etching presses restored. The one on the left was restored for a friend and the one on the right was bought in damaged condition from a school and is restored and for sale
Shin Nihon Zokei etching press restored to it's former glory after rescue from a school where it had suffered abuse, misuse and neglect. This is the second Shin Nihon Zokei press I have restored and just today I got a third Shin Nihon Zokei press brought to me to restore, this one not suffered damage from misuse and abuse but exposure to the elements and long neglect.... nothing missing, nothing damaged just all shabby and surface rust and dust. Seems like I am a Japanese press hospital.... I like fixing up stuff that is well made and useful. Makes me feel useful