Metro aims wide with monster printer

Photographers now have access to the only 76-inch digital C-type printer in the UK after Metro bought in an ultra-wide-format LightJet printer.

There are only 10 LightJet 500XL printers in the whole world, and until Metro bought one, just two of them were used for fine art photographic output - Grieger Labs in Germany, and Griffin in New York.

Oce's LightJet printers (and those from its rival, Lamba, produced by Durst) are favoured by fine art photographers and galleries because they use a true continous tone process, combining digital and silver halide technology. The 500XL can deliver prints of up to 194cm in width at a speed of 45m2 per hour, with resolutions up to 4000dpi.

'Currently, artists have to travel abroad to make larger photographic prints,' says a Metro spokeswoman. 'Since most labs have taken out their horizontal enlargers, it's become impossible to produce large photographic prints, except through a digital process, and until now that process hasn't been available in the UK. Larger prints represent larger ambitions: printing to the scale of 10x6ft puts photographers in the same league as other artists making large-scale work for museums and world-class galleries.

'This is important for the status of photography within the British art world as a whole,' she continues. 'To be able to produce museum-scale photographic prints in this country is essential for photography to be able to punch its weight alongside other mediums. America and Germany have, until now, had something of an advantage over the UK in terms of funding, collectors, institutions and facilities. Metro is doing its bit to change things.'

Metro will begin offering the service later this year, after the printer has been craned into Metro's premises in Clerkenwell in London.

For details, visit metroimaging.co.uk.

Good for two things;

Showing off and life size prints of people you love...


mark page said...

Or perhaps life size prints of people you fancy, or am I being wierd?

marcus doyle said...

That's what I was thinking but kept it to myself...

Andrew Bruce said...

Michael Dyer associates in London still have horizontal enlargers..
I've been working with photographer Anna Linderstam recently, and she's just had a series of 3 life-size full-body portrait made there (traditional colour c-types made from 10x8 negatives)..
I'll be interested to see the results from Metro- should make things easier for us 10x8 shooters.