The 7th Meeting of The Occasional Print Club – Berlin

At the end of September 2013  The Occasional Print Club held their 7th meeting deep down in the basement of  Kulturwerk des BBK in Kreuzberg, Berlin, a grand building in Mariannenplatz that was formerly a Prussian hospital. In attendance this time were myself,  Thomas MayoPatrick Randle and  Ross Shaw.

The Print Studio at  KBBK contains an impressive collection of continental letterpress type, some woodletter, an iron handpress and two large-format relief proofing presses – a gargantuan Korrex press manufactured by Max Simmel in Hamburg and a smaller FAG Control proof press.

After acquainting ourselves with the studio and the unfamiliar German typecase-layout, we set to work designing and typesetting, aware that we had less than 48 hours in which to create our next project. We were spoilt for choice with the array of metal types available and, after a fairly brief discussion of ideas, we decided to use as many of the typefaces available in our design, typeset to form the shape of a lowercase blackletter ‘b’ – ‘b’ for Berlin.

After one and half days of intensive typesetting briefly interrupted by a visit to the studio of master papermaker  Gangolf Ulbricht, along the corridor, we had transferred all of the type from settings sticks & galleys to the bed of the FAG proofing press. After locking the forme up, we took a first pull of the poster and after correcting a handful of typo’s, wrong-founts and spelling errors we turned our attention to choosing a colour scheme for the posters. We chose to print half of the edition in black and green with the remainder printed in red and green.

After printing late into the evening, we sought sanctuary in a nearby bar with hearty German fare and some celebratory Maßkrug’s of local beer.

Kulturwerk des BBK Berlin.

Pat and Ross exploring the cases of metal type.

German typecase layout

German typecase layout.

Tom Mayo inspecting the impression on an early proof.

Justin examining the first colour proof.

Ross printing on the FAG proofing press.

Limited to 50 copies and printed onto 100gsm Zerkall paper in two colours, copies this poster can be purchased  here.

2 Comments

  1. Posted October 7, 2013 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

    The poster looks great! But I love the “off” red/green one depicted here even more than the black one that’s on sale…

  2. Posted October 15, 2013 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    Hello Teresa,

    A number of different versions of the OPC ‘b’ for Berlin poster are available – black only, green & black and red & green (as pictured here).

    They can be purchased from http://nomadletterpress.bigcartel.com/product/b and you’ll need to add a note to the order to specify what one you want.

    Thanks for your interest!
    Justin

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