Monotypes are original works of art which allow the artist to react to color and emotion spontaneously. The medium of monotype is a form of painting favored by artists since the seventeenth century. Rembrandt, Picasso, Matisse, Degas, Chagall, and Gauguin all explored this medium.
Brushes, rollers, palette knives and various tools are used to apply oils on a sheet of clear plexiglass. Paper laid on top of the oil-painted plexiglass is rolled through a press. Pressure transfers the image to the paper, creating a monotype.
A second piece of paper can be placed on the same piece of plexiglass, now almost paint-free, and run through the press again. The result is a lighter, different original referred to as a “ghost image.” The possibilities are as endless as the imagination. The master printer and artist work together to perfect a technique.
Mary Edna’s daughter Reba West Fraser interned for Hand Graphics Print Shop in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and pulled all of the prints in this series.