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Bengston, Billy Al
Experimental Printmaking, Garner Tullis Workshop
Billy Al Bengston
(June 7, 1934 – October 8, 2022)
His first paper works with us were made at Experimental printmaking in the early 1980's. Basically he was making his signature works cutting and pasting printed paper shapes onto larger sheets of handmade paper with yes paste.
When he visited the big press in Emeryville he had another idea.
This was an unusual problem solving project, Billy Al didn't want to work with the oil paints and papers most of our artists used to make prints. He wanted to work with Acrylic paint, and print on canvas problem was acrylic paint and pressure achieved one thing really successfully; adhesion, acrylic is a plastic glue, canvas and plate become one.
Solution was to paint on silicon release paper, Billy Al could then cut out his signature designs, the Draculas or iris shapes, he's paint his colorful washes in Acrylic on the canvas backgrounds. Once everything was set and the composition complete we'd quickly brush on fresh acrylic medium on the shapes put the collage back together and press them. Billy Al got nearly instant paintings and we learned or perhaps discovered a new technique.