artnet international

BRUNO LETI  Australia 1941-     Folio 3

There is an exception to every rule, and Bruno Leti is one of these. In printmaking, there is a tradition of working with a master printer, a tradition as old as the medium itself. Albrecht Durer, re-invented the mediums of the wood cut and engraving in the late 15th century but was content to employ the services of a professional to save the laborious task of cutting the woodblocks. In 19th and 20th century Europe artists such as Picasso, Matisse, Chagall and Hockney created their oeuvres in collaboration with professional master printers. In the US, great print workshops such as Tyler and Gemini collaborated with big name artists who had previously never touched printmaking. In Australia lithographers such as Fred Genis and etchers such as Max Miller have played a huge role in printmaking for major artists.  Leti begs to differ as he combines both creative inspiration and extraordinary printmaking skills.   "I was brought up at a time when master printers in Australia were a rare breed". Thus Leti has matured as an artist/printmaker with a particular reputation for unique monotypes where the "edition" is just one print. "It is a struggle in which you have to conquer yourself". Leti disagrees with the conventional wisdom that technique can be taught but art is a magical gift bestowed only by the gods. "I reckon that being an artist consists of learning to accept yourself and this makes your work personal. With perseverance your works follows your voice which makes your work distinctive, the result of lots of hard work and self-belief."