The pre-cut cardboard box was invented by accident in 1890. During a paper bag production mishap it dawned upon the Brooklyn printer Robert Gair, that cardboard could be cut and creased in one operation, and that he could quickly turn out prefabricated boxes in large quantities. Today it would seem that one is never more than ten feet away from a cardboard box. They are so numerous as to have become invisible, one cardboard box looking very much like another.
The black area of this print is a practical box pattern, the red area indicating some of the surrounding hands that will help it on its’ way. If one considers all the people who have been involved in ultimately producing any one plain box then we regard a cast of countless thousands reaching back generations. Let alone the goods within, a box contains a sort of essence of human endeavour.
This print is pulled from an engraving cut from a sheet of rubber, a variation of letterpress. After removal of areas that are to be left as white paper, the rubber sheet is then rolled up with ink and pressed to paper, producing the print. The technique does not accommodate reprinting, so the edition is forever fixed at 5 copies.
oil based printing ink, Heritage Book White 160 gsm paper