Spanish photographer-cum-artist re prints Pablo Picasso’s painting on Durst printer
18 January 2021: For the first time, a modified Guernica – originally painted by artist Pablo Picasso – has been printed full-size using advanced digital printing and production technologies from Durst. The painting was reworked by celebrated Spanish photographer and artist José Manuel Ballester and the reprint was the star attraction at a recently held special exhibition. A unique linen material was specially prepared for this art print and it meant one chance, no test printing. It was natural that the visitors to the museum exhibition have been amazed at the outstanding print quality.
The exhibition, which also includes a selection of large-format photographs that reflect Bilbao’s deserted streets and spaces, is open until 21 February 2021 at Guggenheim Museum in Spain.
The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao approached Estudios Durero, a company that “imagines, creates and develops new forms of graphic production”, to print the reworked Picasso on a unique, hand-woven linen material with special white coating supplied by the museum, especially for the assignment. It had a total dimension of 3.5 x 7.8 meters. Estudios Durero’s owner Ander Soriano and Ballester spent a day in the Customer Experience Center at the Durst headquarters in Brixen, Italy, with the goal to print the Picasso Guernica interpretation on a Durst Rho 512 six-color machine.
“Guernica” is a 1937 oil painting on canvas recognized as one of the best-known works of Picasso, who died in 1973. Ballester’s work, “Around Guernica, 2009/2020”, is an emptied version of Picasso’s painting that conveys an updated look at the historical event and human tragedy. It is now a centerpiece at the exhibition, “2020/03/15 José Manuel Ballester”, in the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, showing Bilbao city during the lockdown.
During the lockdown last spring, the artist received special permission to move around the deserted city of Bilbao and capture incredible landscapes and images never seen before. These images were the first step of a project in collaboration with Estudios Durero and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, which culminated in a photographic exhibition, publication of a book, and the first reproduction and exhibition of “Around Guernica” to the public.
“It has been a true honor for us and for Durst to develop this special project together with José Manuel Ballester and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao,” said the owner of Estudios Durero, Ander Soriano. “In Picasso’s original work and in Ballester’s reinterpretation, the painting only uses a very wide range of grays and a very high resolution in all its shades, so the print quality must be exceptionally high to offer a true value to its reproduction. And that would have been impossible without the Durst Rho 512 6 C ”.
Rafael Carbonell, Managing Director, Durst Iberica, said “It was a real honor for Durst to support the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in this special project. When you are printing only black, gray, and white the quality needs to be exceptionally high to give arts its true value.”