Sunday, May 12, 2013

100 X 12


In late 2011 I began work on a four plate wood block print of a single speed fixed wheel bicycle in 12" x 12" format using a small steel press given to me by Stephen Niles. Our band Alice Neel had written and recorded a song called fixie love.
The fixie print was intended to become the cover of a 12" vinyl dance mix. Throughout 2012 I kept making prints based on the 12" square.

100 prints lying on the floor at the Ahaa School for the arts in July 2012

installation at the Ahaa School July 2012

 Jamie Hamilton, assistant professor of contemporary art history and theory at the University of Hawaii:

 "These 100  variations of the 12x12 inch format of the woodblock print offer startling perceptual shifts of color, text, geometric patterns, and natural forms. While all of the prints play off repeated forms,  and abstracted shapes modified as Runge’s process unfolded, some prints feel completely unique, lending insight to the way creativity arises in the dedication to reflecting on the simplest aspects of life.

studio with press
Throughout 2012 Dieter Runge produced more than 200 of these wood block prints on a small printing press in his studio.  To let the creative process unfold, Runge set no restrictions on contents or style, but worked improvisationally and with a fluid method of incorporating repeated motifs of the forms that surround him as he worked. The resulting prints range from monochromatic squares or circles to phrases, to the incorporation of any object in his studio or garden that could be put in between the block and the paper. Often working on several prints and color variations at a time and incorporating ghost prints, Runge’s forms build and respond to each other.
6 12"

in studio with guitar

The idea of geometric and natural variation runs throughout the recent history of abstraction in printmaking– from Elsworth Kelly’s non-compositional method to Jennifer Bartlett’s formal minimal systems.  Runge’s background as musician, his interest in meditation, as well as his commitment to the history of woodblock prints, lends his series a bold, luscious and fresh attitude, all at the same time.  The format of each print is a reference to the 12” vinyl record cover. Their visual impact is based as much on the rock’n roll riff as the zen mantra."

taro leafs

Talbot's Cafe San Francisco 2013

Talbot's Cafe San Francisco 2013

2 12" in black frame

3 prints individually framed by client

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