Kenneth Rowntree

Welsh Print


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Kenneth Rowntree 1915–1997
Screenprint on paper
Image: 300 × 377 mm
Presented by the artist 1985

Catalogue entry

Kenneth Rowntree born 1915

P02835 Welsh Print 1970

Screenprint 300 x 377 (11 13/16 x 14 7/8) on paper 560 x 762 (22 1/6 x 30); printed by Richard Hamilton at the Design School, Department of Fine Art, University of Newcastle upon Tyne and published by the artist in an edition of 25
Inscribed 'Kenneth Rowntree 1970' b.r. and '2l/25' b.l.; image includes printed inscription (see below)
Presented by the artist 1985

All quotations, unless otherwise stated, come from a letter to the compiler from the artist dated 13 April 1988.

The title refers to the artist's long association with Wales and Welsh motifs. The print represents a 'distillation' of this prolonged involvement. He describes it as his 'first design for a print' (it was the first print he made). He writes, 'I tried to evoke a feeling that I hold for Wales and things Welsh, not only by the hint of the Welsh script, but also by the individual colours'. The Welsh aspect of the print involves the colours associated with the country and also the section of a Welsh language newspaper integrated into the image in the upper right-hand corner. In a conversation with the compiler on 6 May 1988, the artist said that the inclusion of the Welsh language newspaper was the simplest way of giving the print its Welsh flavour. He said that the content of the text was not necessary for an appreciation of the image and suggested that for this reason is was probably more aimed at an English than a Welsh speaking audience. He did not recall the newspaper where he found the text.

P02835 comprises 'six colours (five and one white, on white ground), with a section of a Welsh language newspaper overprinting one of the colours'. The artist was especially concerned with the effect of the white he uses. He writes, 'the juxtaposition of the colours, and particularly the, I hope, subtle printing of the white on white, which changes with the position it is looked as from', were what interested him in the subject of the work.

The artist has approved this entry.

Published in:
The Tate Gallery 1984-86: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions Including Supplement to Catalogue of Acquisitions 1982-84, Tate Gallery, London 1988, p.454

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