12 O’Clock News is a mezzotint from 2006 by American born printmaker Judith Rothchild. It is pencil signed, titled, and editioned XIX/XX. The regular edition was 50 and this is one of twenty proofs. 12 O’Clock News was printed by the artist on ivory wove Hahnemuhle paper and the platemark measures 11-3/4 x 15-9/16 inches.
12 O’Clock News has such intriguing imagery. The content of the envelop, which is date stamped 1976 and addressed to Elizabeth Bishop, appears to be the letter written in manuscript on translucent paper in the lower right. This scene has many elements of nostalgia, a vintage manual typewriter, a bottle of ink for a fountain pen, a circular eraser with brush, a crook neck lamp, and a spiraling plume of smoke from a cigarette. Close inspection of the words in the unfinished letter on the typewriter reveals that it is evening: “but tonight is the night of the full / moon….seen the world over. But here the moon / ….hang motionless in the sky. It gives very little light, it could be dead. Visibility is poor / less we shall try to give you some idea of / the land and the present situation.” While the letter reveals important information, it is not the 12 o’clock news that the title suggests; that designation goes to the delivered letter as close inspection of the envelop reveals a stamp with a clock face with the hands at 12 o’clock.
Judith Rothchild, printmaker and painter, was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1950. Between the years 1968 and 1970, she studied at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York and the Art Students' League in New York City, as well as the Boston University Tanglewood Summer Institute. In 1970, she began her studies in visual arts at the Rhode Island School of Design, where she received her B.A. degree in Fine Arts in 1972.
That same year, she moved to Europe to continue her training at the Academy of Applied Arts in Vienna. Since 1996, she has devoted herself to mezzotint printmaking, for which she has established a strong international reputation. Rothchild has exhibited widely, including at the Francis Kyle Gallery in London, VII Bienal Internacional Gravura in Portugal, the National Theater in London, Salon International de l'Estampe in France, Art Expo in New York, Salon d'Automne in Paris, Estampa in Madrid, National Museum of Woman in the Arts in Washington, D.C., and Villa des Roses in France, among many others.
Rothchild's work is included in numerous international public collections including, but not limited to, the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; musée Fabre, Montpellier; musée de Bédarieux; Imperial College, London; Harvard University; Yale University; Smith College; New York Public Library; Victoria and Albert Museum; Gulbenkian Foundation; and Bibliothèque nationale de France.
Since 1994, Judith Rothchild has lived in a small village in the Languedoc region of France and she has produced at least twenty-one livres d'artiste since 1997.