The Private Press Screen Print Past Brighton Festival Covers to Support Our Future

Brighton Festival, News

As part of our #BringBackBrightonDome Crowdfunder campaign, we’ve interviewed some of the people who have donated their work or offered their in-kind support to help secure our future re-opening.

Gary Parselle is the founder of The Private Press, a screen printing studio in Brighton. Gary looks after every stage of the printmaking process, from initial consultation through to mixing inks, choosing the right paper and printing everything by hand. The Private Press is kindly screen printing a series of high-quality prints of past Brighton Festival brochures as part of our #BringBackBrightonDome campaign. 

Can you tell us about The Private Press and some of the artists you work with?  

The Private Press is a contemporary screen printing studio in Brighton. We’ve been here for seven years and can’t imagine being anywhere else. We work mainly with artists and graphic designer, but we also print quite a lot of music posters too. Some of our clients include David Shrigley, Anthony Burrill, Sanna Annukka, Hot Chip, The Chemical Brothers, Gilles Peterson and the National Theatre. We pride ourselves on a collaborative approach and meticulous attention to detail, which ensures printing of the highest possible quality.

Why did you decide to help support the Brighton Dome crowdfunder campaign? 

I’ve been to so many events at the Dome over the years, Brighton without the Dome and the annual festival is unthinkable! It is vital our cultural venues are protected and are still around in the future, and so I’m very happy to support the campaign. 

What is a screen print and how are they made in the studio? Is it a lengthy process?  

We make all our prints by hand, nothing is automated, so prints can take a long time depending on their complexity. Before we get to the printing stage, there is a great deal of preparation, preparing artwork and setting up. This was certainly true with the festival prints, where we scanned the covers in high resolution and created colour separations of each artwork in Photoshop. Screen printing is the process of pushing ink through a stencil, layering colours and printing just one at a time, so with each print, up to four screens were made - usually, we print around one colour per day, so a print takes several days to complete.  

Do you have any tips for framing or keeping the screen prints in good condition? 

When you receive the print, carefully take it out of the tube and ideally frame it straight away or store flat if possible. There are lots of good framers in Brighton, or you should be able to find an economically priced A2 frame online.

Did you enjoy working on these particular artworks? Was it interesting to see the different graphic styles from the Festival archives? 

It was something of a dream project, it was really, interesting seeing the evolution of the art over the years from the last 1960s to the present day. 1988s print is by Martin Sharp, legendary graphic artist, so it was a pleasure to print his work. The early designs have a beautiful simplicity and were a joy to work on. It was also great to produce prints of two festivals I remember fondly, Kae Tempest’s in 2017 and David Shrigley’s 2018.

Do you have any special memories of visiting Brighton Dome? 

So many - memorable shows I’ve been to include Floating Points, Neneh Cherry, Steve Reich and Stewart Lee. 

When Brighton Dome reopens who would you like to see perform? 

How about Four Tet, Herbie Hancock, Ezra Collective, Roisin Murphy and Soulwax? I'm very much looking forward to seeing the Dome reopen!

You can purchase a Brighton Festival screen print here

Discover more about The Private Press here