Photo credit: Kenna Love

June Wayne founded Tamarind Lithography Workshop, Inc. in Los Angeles in 1960, and was its director until 1970, when Tamarind moved to Albuquerque and affiliated with the University of New Mexico. Wayne was a painter, and made hundreds of lithographs during her long artistic career. Her visionary plan to revive the art of lithography is an important legacy.

June Claire Wayne (March 7, 1918 Chicago, IL – August 23, 2011 Los Angeles, CA); American printmaker, tapestry designer, painter, and educator.

June Wayne, a painter and printmaker who helped revive the fortunes of fine-art lithography in the United States when she founded the Tamarind Lithography Workshop in 1960 in Los Angeles, died on Tuesday at her home there. She was 93.

The cause was cancer, her daughter, Robin Claire Park, said.

Ms. Wayne, a self-taught painter, became interested in lithography in the late 1940s and, after collaborating with the printer Marcel Durassier in Paris in the 1950s, adopted it as her primary means of expression.

It was an odd decision. In the heyday of Abstract Expressionism, which placed a premium on the artist’s direct application of paint to canvas, printmaking in the US had suffered a steep decline in prestige.

Ms. Wayne, determined to reverse the situation, coaxed a grant from the Ford Foundation and in 1960 founded a printmaking studio named after the Hollywood street on which it was located.

“In my mind, lithography has been linked to the great white whooping crane, which, like lithography, was on the verge of extinction when Tamarind Lithography Workshop came into being,” she wrote in a 1990 essay. “In all the world there were only 36 cranes left, and in the United States there were no master printers able to work with the creative spectrum of...
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Suzan Hamer


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