Last Saturday I got to play with and demonstrate Buffy Cribbs’ new Minerva Mini- Halfwood Press, that she built under the guidance of Bill Ritchie, who is the developer of the press. It’s really another part of the printmaking revolution that’s been happening around the world of printmaking. Bill, who was a professor at the UW where I went to graduate school…um…let’s just say a while ago…developed this press as an alternative to the 600 lb. monsters that many printmakers (myself included) own and create hand pulled prints on. Don’t get me wrong… I love my press. It’s a 30″x60″ Takach table top press, made right here in the US of A by people who are so sure of their product that they give it a 20 year warranty. I can do larger monoprints and etchings on it.
Gail Gwinn introduced me to the “mini” and she also has a larger press. There are a number of small presses out there, and I’m not going to mention them by name, because mostly they are not worth half the price. A few of the excellent press makers do make smaller models, but they are still really studio models, meaning you can’t easily take them on the road to teach or do demonstrations. The mini is easily picked up and carted around, and pulls excellent prints. They are not cheap, but when was any good quality art producing product, from brushes to easels to presses, inexpensive? I’ve posted a link to a video Bill made of me demonstrating the press last weekend, and there is already a link to Gail Gwinn’s wordpress blog where she has more info about her mini.
Here’s a link to Buffy Cribb’s website if you decide you can’t live without your own Mini Halfwood. Her model is called the Minerva, and uses the same metal assembly that Bill uses on his press, and is created with his blessing. (after all, he might want to retire sooner or later.) http//www.cribbs–morrow.com