The Studio in 2018

In spring we head for the Cotswolds again. At the Oxford Fine Press Bookfair I present the new artist‘s book: Issue No. 4 in the series „Manarah“. I am delighted that this work quickly wins the award of the Oxford Guild of Printers.

As like all issues in the Manarah-series, there is only one theme. Issue 4 has a wind theme. We have moved to a region where you need to get used to having almost permanent wind. In the mornings the air might be quite still, but with the sun rising higher the air will start to stir and the wind will increase in force over the day. Thus, wind is entirely appropriate as the theme for the first book made at the new location.

During all epochs and for all peoples wind has been a force mankind has had to come to terms with in some way. There was only limited ways to shelter from it. And wind could only be made use of to a certain degree. More often than not, man was just at the mercy of wind. The book is a collection of aphorisms, poetry and stories connected by wind from all corners of the world and covers many of mankind‘s experiences with wind.

Taking into account the here and now, a print with the title „Red Herring“ is made just in time for the Oxford bookfair. We live in times of „Fake News“, „Alternative Facts“ and gaslighting, and thus it is helpful to have a Red Herring hung on the wall as permanent reminder not to believe all you are being told, and to be aware what you see might not be what you get. The Red Herring describes something used as a distraction from a core problem, it wants to mislead in a debate, and not only just in political spheres. This has become quite relevant, particularly in times like the one we currently find ourselves in.

In mid-May it becomes obvious that one of our medlar trees has been mauled by root voles. The lower end of the stem looks like a fence pole. We plant the half-standard tree in a pot with best substrate and keep it in a sheltered place on the patio. Next year it will have regrown a dense root bale and we can re-plant it, its roots safeguarded by a new wire-mesh basket.

In late May, we pick up our new dog Lotta from an animal shelter. She is just half a year old. Since she does not rate as of small-size (which is less than 20 kilos) I‘ll have to give proof of having expertise of keeping a dog that size (well, she is only just so over 20 kilos). She is a beautiful mongrel being a descendant of the Romanian stray-dog line, so to speak, reaching back many a dog generation. She is shy with humans, but she has a loving heart. And she will come to love her place in the printroom.

We decide on preparing a bed for vegetables and in the exact spot we choose, we find the remains of a former hen house. It is the second spot on the premises, we find a burial place of building rubble. However, this particular spot appears to be the place where all broken glass was deposited, ranging from old bottles to broken stable windows, so we need to work very carefully while encountering a lot of bits with sharp edges.

At long last I can finalise „Gesammelte Makulaturen“ (Collected Spoils). These texts were written in 2010 while working on the artist‘s book on Kurt Tucholsky. He enthusiastically used pseudonyms, the best known are Theobald Tiger and Peter Panter. I had the idea to give Kurt Tucholsky, who died in 1935, a voice, or rather a pen for that matter, to write about contemporary subjects. I created 10 characters or pseudonyms, from Cora Cobra and Markus Marder to Walter Waschbaer, all of whom would write essays in a Tucholskyesque-style. I had initially planned a special edition of these texts, and thus printed a slightly higher edition back in 2010. Finally I can make those prints into the books they were always meant to be. The series comprises of ten slim brochures, each having one text. And of course, like the large work on Tucholsky, all of them are deliberately printed to be spoils.

Briefly noted:

Exhibiting at the Fine Press Bookfair in Oxford

On 15 March this year traditional artistic printmaking techniques are given the status of immaterial national cultural heritage.

Published in 2018:

Red Herring“ lino etching, linocut, from 2 blocks

Manarah 4: Wind, artist‘s book

Series „Posito – Gesammelte Makulaturen“, 10 issues


Fine Press Book Fair in Oxford

Cultural Heritage

The vegetable bed on the Garden-Blog

To be continued on 1 June 2024

Caption says: Our Chairman with OGP Member, and Private Press Prize winner, Annette Dißlin (photo by Joe Swift)


  1. Hello Annette. What a gorgeous portrait of the lovely Lotta.

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