III. Return to Printmaking:
Adventures with Monoprints and Print Collages (1987–1996)
In 1987, Yolanda del Riego (YR) received her long-awaited Charles Brand etching press and resumed printmaking in her studio. She continued her experiments with Japanese papers, dyes and wrinkling - focusing primarily on monoprints.
Monoprints from the French Revolutionary Calendar Series (1989)
In 1989, Yolanda del Riego created a series of monoprints inspired by the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution and the first wave of feminism in France. The works were named after the calendar months of the French Revolutionary Calendar: "Messidor" —month of the harvest, "Thermidor" —month of heat, etc. The resulting works were exhibited at Galería María Salvat in Barcelona in a show titled Yolanda del Riego y sus métodos calcográficos.
…she [YR] uses the etching press not as an instrument of seriation, but, most of the time, as an instrument of realization, that is, she uses the etching press as if it were a brush. And the works that the artist creates, with some exceptions, are unique (and have nothing to do with those once frequent monotypes). Yolanda del Riego has managed to renounce the printing process by using the press to transform printing technique into the creative process itself. Her works have that appeal and allure that are so characteristic of unique works.
—Francesc Miralles. "Yolanda del Riego. Tórculo sobre pincel".
(1989, Oct 20). La Vanguardia, (pg.11)
Monoprints from the Bohemian Series (1989-1996)
While not exactly bohemian or unconventional in her personal life, YR’s approach to printmaking has always been nonconformist. Her monoprints from the first half of the 1990s are a result of a passionate exploration of unconventional uses of printmaking techniques.
In the early 1990s YR went back to creating collages, this time with torn-up etchings. The works in this section are radically different from her earlier patchworks in that the torn-up etchings —used like puzzle pieces— add an impactful layer of complexity.
"That Yolanda del Riego’s work is created using printmaking methods is, or should be, something merely informative. The same thing applies to the support used: Japanese paper, in many instances with a translucency that enables a work to be viewed from both sides. These are all techniques that she has dominated for years as her record reminds us… It may be the geometry, it may be the idea of 'collage' or even the surreal; the fact is that her internal spaces, delimited by the amplitude of the paper support, provide cohesive results with each other without contradiction. Her work achieves in this way its significance… "
—Joseph Garnería [Catalog text for the exhibition “Exploring the Limits of Paper”, Dean Gallery (Valencia), May 1996]