Posted on

Karl Koenig

Karl Koenig “Grain Elevator” Gum Oil

Grain Elevator – Gum Oil

Each gumoil image is hand-crafted. A sheet of 100% rag paper is coated with sensitized liquid gum Arabic and contact-exposing it to a transparent positive under ultraviolet radiation. The coated sheet is then developed in water, thoroughly dried, and later rubbed with a dark pigment such as lamp black oil paint. Excess pigment is wiped off and the paper is briefly dipped in a bleach bath to oxidize away (etch) some of the light-hardened residual gum Arabic. This leaves the next tonal region of the picture open to a second pigment application. The sequence is repeated until the print is finished over the course of several days or weeks. It is the successive etchings and applications of oil colors that lead to the richness and dimensionality of the finished print. Karl Koenig founded the gumoil printing process in 1990. 

About Karl Koenig (New Mexico USA) After a career in academic psychology (Stanford and University of New Mexico) and private practice, Karl’s lifelong interest in art and photography increased. He moved closer to print making and alternative process photography.  He studied lithography, silkscreen, non-silver photography while reducing hours in clinical work. In 1990 Karl discovered a new alternative process, polychromatic Gumoil photographic printing. After publishing a book on the discovery and several articles he gave lectures, demonstrations, workshops and exhibiting work based on the process across USA and in Australia at gold street studios. The Grain Elevators is an Iconic Gumoil Print.  Sadly, Karl passed away on the 18th January 2012.