Richard HamiltonStage Proof 4 1972

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Artwork details

Richard Hamilton (1922‑2011)
Stage Proof 4
Date 1972
MediumScreenprint on paper
Dimensionsimage: 681 x 858 mm
Acquisition Presented by the artist 1977
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms


Release – Stage Proofs 1-13 and 16-19 (P02416-32; the series is incomplete) is a group of seventeen prints showing the process of building up colour to make the print Release (P04254). Each proof represents the successive addition of a screen, made from a hand-cut stencil, used to apply a particular colour. The completed print Release combines the seventeen colour screens, each used once, and the photographic black screen which has the texture of an imprint on canvas as well as the photographic halftone, used twice.

The print Release derives its title from the name of an organisation set up to provide legal aid and social support to people who have fallen foul of the law, often as a result of drug abuse. In 1972, Diana Melly (married to the jazz musician, writer and critic George Melly and working for Release) asked Hamilton if he would make a print to help raise funds for the organisation which was in financial difficulties. The artists Jim Dine (born 1935) and David Hockney (born 1937) also contributed, deciding to divide the profits between Release and the National Council for Civil Liberties… (read more)

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