Archive: Issue No. 79, March 2004

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Kentridge prints donated to Wits

Printmaking is currently regarded as something of an archaic art practice, remarked Randy Hemminghaus, master printer from New York's Galamander Press. Speaking at the handover of a series of prints by Wits-based artists and alumni to the Wits School of Arts, he was nonetheless upbeat about its achievements, particularly in the hands of South African artists.

His collaborative association with William Kentridge has previously led to a major body of prints, Zeno Writing, which formed part of the body of work handed over to the university. Other artists included Colbert Mashile, Jo Ractliffe and Colin Richards.

His third visit to the country, Hemminghaus previously spent three months working in the Wits University Print Department in 2002, to introduce the photogravure process to local artists. A series of dark and haunting photogravures by Jo Ractliffe attest to achievements of this collaborative process, which has been facilitated by David Krut Fine Art, with whom Hemminghaus shares studio space in New York's Chelsea district.

Aside from Hemminghaus, the audience was addressed by David Krut, Professor David Bunn (Head of the Wits School of Arts and Chair of History of Art) and William Kentridge, the latter remarking (with much admiration) on Hemminghaus' painstaking print technique and method.