Saturday, January 17, 2015

City of the World 2012

City of the World 2012

City of the World blocks 112 artists
Then there was the greatest City ever! Notice, if you’re following the dates, it took me four years to recover from the last mammoth printing session! When I began mulling the design for the next puzzle print, I planned it as a four-panel print. I also wanted to open the participation to artists outside of our comfortable happy group, if a bit nervously at first. I mean, what would happen if I sent tiny puzzle pieces all over the world and they never returned? Although previous puzzles had (almost) financed themselves with participant contributions, dealing with the unknown seemed like a risk.

One fine day I just dismissed all doubt and decided to plunge forward. My call for action was answered by an astounding 112 printmakers, causing me to question my sanity and, more practically, expand the panel set to five. With an odd number of panels, the only design possibility was a long horizontal design. Doing the math, this meant printing around 112x5 or 560 prints! For this, I would need help and so my printmaking co-conspirators in the Northwest USA stepped up to help and offered a location and strong arms to crank the press. 
My call for help was answered in Oregon!

That's what a lot of prints look like

The resulting print party, I hope one of many, was grueling but incredibly fun and in about three days’ time we produced 600 gorgeous prints to send back to participating artists. Details, photos and videos of the great Northwest Print Party can be found in my YouTube channel.

The City of the World can be seen here: 
Year: 2011-2012
Title: City of the World
Artists: 112
Print Type: Collaborative Woodcut Puzzle Print
Paper: Stonehenge Natural
Dimensions: Five (5) panels, each 30 x 22 inches or 76 x 56 centimeters
Image Dimensions: Bleed to size of paper
Block: Cherry plywood, five (5) panels approximately same size as paper
Ink: Daniel Smith Traditional Black #79 Oil Based

Beginning with the City of the World, I also decided that a simple colophon of information was inadequate to document the amazing nature of these collaborations. Well, that, and the fact that printing a few pages had now increased to more than it was practical to churn out of my tired inkjet printer and I kept getting questions about the process, the participants, and individual images and so on. The solution was to expand the colophon information into a book-length manuscript and let participants download the digital version and make the printed version available to everyone that wants to tag along in our great adventures.
Each artist gets their own page with image and blurb

The book City of the World 2012: Monumental Collaborative Puzzle Print was born and is now available through in both print and e-book versions. It includes not only the panels and the maps of all the participants but each participant artist is featured in their own page where they comment on their unique images. Publishing the book essentially turned the project into a recorded social event. Each participant contributed a lone image, unaware of the images submitted by their unknown neighbors. The print and later the book, gathers all these unique individuals and establishes a conversation of images and text, encompassed by the concept of the larger image, a great city of the world. An artistic print party of global proportions!

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