+=studio blu=+, founded by Stephen Hazel and Kathleen Rabel in 1979, collaborates with artists to bring their works on paper to completion in its fifteen-hundred square-foot facility located near Seattle’s waterfront. Internationally exhibiting artist-in-residence at +=studio blu=+, Kathleen Rabel directs this completely custom workshop. +=studio blu=+ has as its focus the making of works of art on paper. One might say that working on paper, especially a beautiful handmade sheet, can enlarge the artist’s focus as sculpture does, as painting in fresco might. All mediums must be considered as well as intaglio, lithography, sosaku-hanga (modern Japanese wood-cut technique). It is also true that we can clear the obstacles the individual might encounter when working in prints; the ink, the paper, the acid and the press, and that interventions often serve to move the work forward.
What we cannot do, however, is the work of the artists, nor can we deflect their idiosyncrasies. Each artist who comes to work in +=studio blu=+ constructs with us an individual and unique program to produce a specific work. Our role is to achieve this goal along with the artist by assisting them in every way to realize their ideal.
We can present the artist with the opportunity to work in all intaglio techniques including engraving, mezzotint and printing with chine-collé. There is lithography from aluminum plates. There is sosaku-hanga which also embodies many of the techniques invented for traditional Japanese block prints.
We work from a palette of handmade papers from the seminal makers of Europe, Japan, China, and India as well as vintage papers previously collected as “white art”, and the most beautiful of modern American sheets from Twinrocker. At present our double-geared English Presses easily print up to 24 x 34 inch plates. Our double-geared lithographic press prints up to 36 x 50 inches.
All scheduling is for the artist’s convenience and arrangements can be made for those artists visiting Seattle from other parts of the world.