Maki’s earliest works were done in the late 1950s and remained rather unknown until the late 1960s. He first started producing prints using red ink in 1965 and this is probably the first example. It is also a Big Red. It is very abstract and it fills up the whole sheet. Maki wanted his prints to have balance. This has it: the red field is pierced by three blue squares: two on the left side of the orange meteor-like strokes, and one on the right side. The field is composed of small squares of horizontal and/or vertical strokes. 16.1 x 22.9 inches, (41 x 58.4 cm). I think this print is better than Heap-like prints but on a par with the Emanation 65B print shown in the last frame of the listing.
This Big Red has a weaker paper than later prints; why? Michael Minckler holds the view that
because Maki was still working his way toward the two layer paper that came to characterize much of his work from 1966 on.
Two layers makes for a stronger paper and allows for larger prints. A thinner paper does not lend itself to large prints – which Maki evidently wanted to make. By the same token the image in frame 8 of a Maki print done in
1958 is embossed but on paper thinner than the 1965 print shown here: Maki was working his way to
The Maki Style.
Proportion 10 done in 1966 also shows the embossing in full play with bold abstract calligraphy
yellow print Proportion 10 is 50 x 40 cm It was done in 1966 and is a very early two sheet paper print