Carlos Cruz-Diez (b. 1923), Three plates, from: Induction Chromatique, 1979. three screenprints in colours, Image: 600 x 600 mm. (3), Estimate: £4,000–6,000
Each time I see a Carlos Cruz-Diez print in person I immediately want to share it. Their structure and his precision with complementary colours – and occasionally deliberately clashing colours – can be mesmerising. When the images are reproduced online or in catalogues there is an essence that is missing and you really have to see the work in person.
The Induction Chromatique series that the artist tirelessly explored is linked to the optical and visual effects of the after-image: you look, you close your eyes and the image is ingrained. Fun for anyone who loved Magic Eye puzzles!
Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926), Cronaca 2, 4, 5 and 7, 1976. Four etchings in colour, with embossing on copper and epoxy plate, Sheet: 982 x 689 mm. (each) (4), Estimate: £4,000–6,000
It was two years ago that I was introduced to the work of Arnaldo Pomodoro by a colleague and he has been a firm favourite ever since. He was also the catalyst for me exploring the relationship between printmaking and sculpture – it is surprising for most to learn how intrinsically linked the two disciplines are. The depth at which these four prints from the Cronaca series are printed, and the texture this produces, surprises even the most seasoned print collectors. I love how Pomodoro’s work challenges assumptions about prints and printmaking: it can be a watershed moment for many – the moment when you discover the print world is not flat.
Christo (b. 1935), Wrapped Spiegel, 1963. Der Spiegel magazine (folded), transparent plastic wrap, string and scotch tape, 310 x 120 x 8 mm. (overall), Estimate: £3,000–5,000
Der Spiegel is an iconic German magazine. It sits comfortably somewhere between National Geographic and The Economist and has always had a superb grasp of Kultur. I’ve been reading the magazine for more than 15 years and I always look out for it. Christo’s use of the publication and his decision to select 130 copies with varying covers means that each time you see this piece it generates the same level of curiosity. This particular edition has Marc Chagall’s Self-Portrait with a Clock as the cover image.
Gino Severini was one of my favourite artists when I was studying art history at school, and later I made frequent visits to Cortona in Italy to see his celebrated mosaics, sculptures and paintings. As such I was thrilled to encounter Les Arlequins. Though the print was produced late in the artist’s life, it recalls the imagery of his early works and is instantly recognisable as Severini by those who enjoy both Cubism and Futurism.
Picasso is responsible for my love of linocuts, in particular his joyful posters created for the Association des potiers des Vallauris and the annual bullfights in the French town of Vallauris. He worked there for many years with the master printmaker Hidalgo Arnéra. Their collaboration and exploration of the medium gave rise to highly creative linocut printmaking process, pushing the limits of the technique and blurring the line between print and sculpture. This particular example shows the grand scale of the linocuts and is considered one of the most desirable subjects from among his Exposition posters.