VIDEO – Learning Picasso’s linocut tools and techniques

After moving to the south of France, far from Paris, Pablo Picasso was introduced to the creative potential of linocut printing by a young master printer, Hildalgo Arnéra (1922-2007). Picasso conceived of the composition and carved the linocut block, while Arnéra managed the rest of the printing process. Working closely together, the two would discuss the desired colours and effects through ongoing collaboration.

Linocut printing is a relief process where the areas of the linocut block are carved away. Picasso most often used a reductive technique. He carved further into the block for each colour to reveal the next layer to be printed. The block is usually printed from lightest to darkest colour. It requires a tremendous power of imagination to foresee how each change in the block will impact on the composition as a whole.

In this video, Saskatoon artist Patrick Bulas discusses printmaking, Picasso’s interest in the medium and how artists work with printers to create their work.

Remai Modern is home to the most comprehensive collection of Picasso’s linocut works in the world, a rotating selection of which can be seen in the museum’s Picasso Gallery on Level 3.