Coeli Celesti Sphaerium etching 1997 76 x 56 cm
Intaglio is a printmaking technique in which the image is incised into a surface by metal tools or being bitten by acid. Normally, copper or zinc plates are used as a surface, and the incisions are created by etching, engraving, drypoint, or mezzotint. To print an intaglio plate, the surface is covered in ink, and then rubbed vigorously with tarlatan cloth and tissue paper to remove the ink from the surface, leaving it only in the incisions. A damp piece of paper is placed on top, and the plate and paper are run through a printing press that, through pressure, transfers the ink from the recesses of the plate to the paper.
Book of Hours V 2002 30 x 46 cm
Engraving, as a method of making prints, seems to have developed in the middle 15th century, perhaps in Germany. Some kind of engraving had been used to decorate weapons and armour, musical instruments and religious objects since ancient times, and this sometimes involved rubbing a black pigment into the lines so that they would stand out more clearly, so that the transition to laying a sheet of paper on the engraved object and obtaining an impression of the design might readily suggest itself. Martin Schongauer was one of the earliest known artists to exploit the copper-engraving technique.
F_08 Etching 1999 76 x 112 cm
In the 17th and 18th centuries this method was at its height and was often used to reproduce portraits. The etching process is believed to have been invented by Daniel Hopfer (ca 1470-1536) of Augsburg, Germany, who decorated armour in this way, and applied the method to printmaking.
Etching differs from engraving in that the lines are eaten into the plate by the action of an acid instead of being gouged with a tool. The acid eats the metal, leaving behind roughened areas, or if the surface exposed to the acid is very narrow, burning a line into the plate.
Still Life (Wishing it Were) Detail 1992 76 x 112 cm
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