Monday, 31 October 2016

Jan Saenredam’s engraving, “Elijah Fed by Two Ravens in the Desert”, after Abraham Bloemaert


Jan Saenredam (c.1565–1607)
“Elijah Fed by Two Ravens in the Desert” (Elie nourri dans le desert par deux corbeaux), 1604, after Abraham Bloemaert (1564–1651), from the series “The prophet Elijah.”
Engraving trimmed to the image borderline on laid paper and supported on a conservator’s sheet of fine washi paper.
Size: (sheet) 16.8 x 19.5 cm
Lettered in lower left corner "Abraham Bloemaert inuen. / Joan, Saenredam Sculp, et excudebat / Ao [] 1604." In the margin two columns of text, each two lines "Jusserat irriguas ... cadente recedit" by "TSchrevelius".

The British Museum offer the following description of this print:
“Elijah fed by ravens; Elijah sits on the ground in the wilderness and reaches up to receive a piece of fruit from the beak of a raven (1 Kings 17:2-7); after Bloemaert. 1604” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1490208&partId=1&searchText=Abraham+Bloemaert+Saenredam&page=1)

Bartsch (1803) III.226.22 (Bartsch, Adam, “Le Peintre graveur”, 21 vols, Vienna, 1803); Bartsch (1980) IV.22, p. 331; Hollstein 14 (Hollstein, F W H, “Dutch and Flemish etchings, engravings and woodcuts c.1450-1700”, Amsterdam, 1949); Roethlisberger 1993 81 (Roethlisberger, Marcel G; Röthlisberger, Marcel G, “Abraham Bloemaert and his sons: Paintings and prints”, 2 vols, Ghent, 1993); Nailer 22; Wurzbach 23

Condition: crisp impression, trimmed to the image borderline and supported on a conservator’s sheet of fine washi paper. There is a small stain towards the centre of the right side and a few scattered speck stains, otherwise the print is in marvellous condition.

I am selling this rare, old master engraving for a total cost of AU$346 (currently US$263.27/EUR240.30/GBP216.32 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this sublimely drawn engraving, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.


To my eyes Saenredam has given a “spark of life” to his representation of the trees shown in this print. I love the way that they seem to respond to the ravens descending with food for the prophet by arching in a rhythm to almost give the birds a better flight-path access to him. This subtle treatment of the trees may be a very small component in the composition but it is elements like this that make the image strong.





Sunday, 30 October 2016

Antonie Wierix’s engraving, “The Flagellation of Christ” after Maarten de Vos


Antonie Wierix (II) (c.1562–1624)
“The Flagellation of Christ” (Matthew 27:26; Mark 15:15; John 19:1), c.1610, after Maarten de Vos (1532–1603)
Engraving on fine laid paper with watermark “Crowned Arms”, trimmed on, or within, the platemark
Size: (sheet) 26.5 x 18.6 cm
Lifetime impression of the only state
New Hollstein 323
Note: the Rijksmuseum holds a variation of Wierix’s flagellation of Christ after Maarten de Vos see: https://www.rijksmuseum.nl/nl/collectie/RP-P-1906-2090

Condition: strong lifetime impression, trimmed on, or within, the platemark. There is a small closed tear on the left edge otherwise in marvellous condition.

I am selling this rare, old master engraving for a total cost of AU$239 (currently US$181.51/EUR165.48/GBP148.85 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this superb, museum quality engraving please send me an email (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will email you a PayPal invoice.

This print has been sold


I discovered this superb engraving by chance last week while I was trying to locate a “missing” Wierix wood engraving that a client had expressed interest in seeing. When I found this comparative large print my jaw literally dropped, as it is so good and I had forgotten all about it!

Engravings like this are rare and even though the Wierix family are well-known for their finely crafted engravings, this one should be in a museum.

What makes it so marvellous can be seen by examining seemingly insignificant details like the treatment of the figures’ hair. For instance, note how the artist has captured the flow of the curls, the weight of the hair when it hangs and even that the three figures are blonde. 






Saturday, 29 October 2016

Valentin Lefebre’s etching, "St Jerome in the Wilderness, after Titian”, 1682


Valentin Lefebre (aka Valentin Le Fevre; Valentin Le Febre; Valentin Lefebure; Valentin Lefèvre) (1637–77)
"St Jerome in the Wilderness, after Titian”, 1682, published by Jacobus van Campen, from the series “Opera selectiora quae Titianus Vecellius Cadubriensis et Paulus Calliari Veronensis inventarunt ac pinxerun” of 53 prints.
Etching on laid paper lined onto a support sheet
Size: (support sheet) 46.4 x 33.5 cm; (sheet trimmed on, or within, the platemark) 45.9 x 32.9 cm
Lettered in lower margin: (lower-left) "V. lefebre del. et sculp."; (lower-centre) "TITIANVS VECELLIVS CAD INVENT. & PINXIT"; (lower-right) "J. Van Campen Formis Venetÿs."
According to the British Museum: “This is a copy in reverse after the painting by Titian, formerly in the Church of Santa Maria Nuova in Venice, but transferred to Milan to the Accademia di Brera.” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=3087559&partId=1&searchText=lefebre&page=1)
Hollstein 1-53; Ruggeri 2001 I.15

Condition: Strong impression but in poor condition. The print has been trimmed on, or within, the plate marks and has been glued to a support sheet. There are many significant stains and the upper corners have losses that have been restored. 

I am selling this large and exceptionally rare print for a total cost of AU$158 (currently US$119.99/EUR109.40/GBP98.40 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this large and exceptionally rare etching please send me an email and I will email you a PayPal invoice.


This is a powerful print.

For me, there are two elements contributing to making this image strong and memorable ... but, of course, I may be off target and there may be other more important reasons that I'm not seeing at the moment.

The first element is symbolism and the layering of meanings expressed. For instance, my eyes are riveted on the skull (the famous vanitas symbol of our mortality) perched up on the rocks. This relatively common symbol in early prints may not in itself make the image memorable, but in this print the expressed meaning is memorable—perhaps even haunting, as suggested by a fellow Instagramer—because the skull is “watching” the saint.

The second element has to do with the dynamics of the composition. For instance, my eyes are drawn to the contrast of direction between the angle of the saint's diagonal stretching movement and the angle of the tree limb matched by a myriad of other parallel angles throughout the composition countering his movement.

Leaving aside the reasons for the visual strength of this large and beautiful print, what I find fascinating to contemplate is the play of light and shadow that keeps me engaged in looking at the image. Titian was famous for using a counterpoint of lights and darks to make his images sparkle (not forgetting that Lefebre was copying a painting by Titian for the design of this etching). In fact, I remember reading an article by Charles Ricketts (1908) in the Burlington Magazine (Vol. 13, No. 61, p. 10) where Ricketts coined a term for Titian’s checker-board pattern of lights and darks: “Titian's formula.”

Regarding the background to the print, Lefebre is famous for his series of etchings, “Opera Selectiora”, after Titian and Veronese. Sadly, Lefebre never completed his envisaged series as he died at the young age of only 40. Nevertheless, after his death his prints were published in 1680 by Jacques van Campen, but, The British Museum states the rather surprising fact that “the 1680 edition does not seem to exist.” The BM also notes that the series “was reprinted in 1684, and in the XVIIIc in 1749, 1763; later by Teodoro Viero who added his address to the plates (editions in 1786 and 1789).” This print is a graphic translation in line of Titian’s painting, “St Jerome.” When Lefebre drew the painting as a copy for this etching he didn't make allowance that when the plate was printed the image would be in reverse of Titian’s painting.





Friday, 28 October 2016

Karel Dujardin’s etching of two sleeping hunting dogs


Karel Dujardin (aka Karel Du Jardin; Carel Dujardin; Carel du Jardin; Bokkebaart) (1626–78)
“Les Chiens” (sleeping dogs), 1641–78
Etching on fine laid paper signed in the plate (upper right) with small margins.
Size: (sheet) 15.9 x 15.9 cm; (plate) 14.9 x 13.5 cm; (image borderline) 14.5 x 13.2 cm
State iii (of iii)
Inscribed at top right: "K. D.V. I. fe" with the number “5” at lower-right corner
Hollstein 5.III (Hollstein, F W H, “Dutch and Flemish etchings, engravings and woodcuts c.1450-1700”, Amsterdam, 1949); Bartsch I.167.5 (Bartsch, Adam, “Le Peintre graveur”, 21 vols, Vienna, 1803); Bartsch 5.1, (1978, p. 175)
The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
“Two hunting dogs asleep, one with legs extended, the other curled up, a fence behind them, hunting gear including a decoy bird in a cage in right background” (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=1615047&partId=1&searchText=dujardin+dogs&page=1)

Condition: delicate, crisp impression (a slightly stronger impression than that held by the British Museum) in near pristine condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, abrasions, folds, foxing or stains) with small margins. This is a superb print on exceptionally fine laid paper.

I am selling this beautiful etching in a remarkable state of preservation for AU$158 (currently US$119.66/EUR109.62/GBP98.29 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this small etching revealing the outstanding draughtsmanship of Dujardin, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


What I love about this print is the same attribute that I love about Lucian Freud’s etchings: the use of line to visually “feel” the form of the subject.

For instance, when I look at the use of line to render the foreground dog, I can see how Dujardin has softened the silhouette edge of the dog’s neck in a haptic response to the abundant hair in this area; whereas Dujardin has reduced the detail of the silhouette edge around the dog’s hips to a single extraordinarily sensitive and insightful line. There is deep knowledge about dogs and how to draw them in a meaningful way expressed in this print. 






Thursday, 27 October 2016

Jules Jacquemart’s etching of a crystal ewer


Jules Jacquemart (aka Jules Ferdinand Jacquemart) (1837–80)
“Plate 45: Aiguiere de Crystal de Roche”, 1865, from the series “Gemmes et Joyaux de la Couronne au Musée du Louvre”, printed by Auguste Delâtre (1822–1907) and published by Henry Barbet de Jouy.
Etching with plate/surface tone on laid paper with full margins (as published).
Size: (sheet) 54.5 x 37.1 cm; (plate) 430 x 29.7b cm; (image borderline) 39.8 x 27 cm
Inscribed within the image (lower centre) “Jules Jacquemart delin. et Sculpt.”
Lettered above the image (upper left corner) “PL. 45”; (upper centre) “MUSÉE DU LOUVRE.”
Lettered below the image (centre) “Imp. Delȃtre, Paris.”

To see the complete series see Elizabeth Legge gallery: http://www.leggeprints.com/jacquemart/index.htm
The British Museum offers the following description of this print:
"A rock crystal vase decorated with foliated scrolls and a handle in the shape of a term bending backwards." (http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=3533121&partId=1&searchText=jacquemart+Aiguiere+&page=1)
Gonse 157.IV (Gonse, Louis, “Jules Jacquemart”, Gazette des Beaux-Arts)

Condition: large, flawless impression in near pristine condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, abrasions, folds or foxing, but there are a couple of small spots) with generous margins.

I am selling this remarkable illustration of a crystal ewer from the Louvre collection for AU$118 (currently US$89.89/EUR82.26/GBP73.31 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this large etching of the highest order of technical skill, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.


The Chalcographie de Louvre commissioned Jacquemart to execute this and the other illustrations for Henri Barbet de Jouy’s “Gemmes et Joyaux du Louvre” in two folio volumes (see FL Leipnik’s [1924] “A History of French Etching”, p. 118). The Chalcographie’s choice of Jacquemart as the reproductive illustrator is easy to understand, as through his career he had produced 400 plates recording collections of precious stones, medals, daggers, swords, bronze busts statuettes, ceramics and paintings. In short, Jacquemart had established his reputation based on his high level of technical skills even if his reproductive prints of other artists’ artworks were (to quote Leipnik) “scarcely above mediocrity” (p. 118).

Regarding Jacquemart’s technical skills, Leipnik offers the following insightful assessment of Jacquemart’s proficiencies:

“Jacquemart’s marvellous achievement is the still unrivalled reproduction of the surface texture of … the perfect suggestion of the dull glimmer of gold, of the pale sheen of silver, of the vibrating lustre of china, of the liquid fire and the prismatic rays of faceted stone and the grain of leather; and the inimitable rendering of the translucent, opalescent or opaque qualities of these various materials.” (ibid)





Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Jules Jacquemart’s etching of a goblet


Jules Jacquemart (aka Jules Ferdinand Jacquemart) (1837–80)
“Plate 53: Gobelet de Sardoine Oriental”, 1865, from the series “Gemmes et Joyaux de la Couronne au Musée du Louvre”, printed by Auguste Delâtre (1822–1907) and published by Henry Barbet de Jouy.
Etching with plate/surface tone on laid paper with full margins (as published).
Size: (sheet) 54.5 x 37.5 cm; (plate) 38.7 x 28.4 cm; (image borderline) 34.4 x 24.3 cm
Inscribed within the image (lower centre) “Jules Jacquemart delin. et Sculpt.”
Lettered above the image (upper left corner) “PL. 53”; (upper centre) “MUSÉE DU LOUVRE.”
Lettered below the image (centre) “Imp. Delȃtre, Paris.”

To see the complete series see Elizabeth Legge gallery: http://www.leggeprints.com/jacquemart/index.htm

Condition: large, flawless impression in near pristine condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, abrasions, folds or foxing, but there are a couple of small spots) with generous margins.

I am selling this remarkable illustration of a goblet from the Louvre collection for AU$118 (currently US$90.59/EUR82.84/GBP74.13 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing this large etching of the highest order of technical skill, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.


Sometimes masterpieces of the highest order of technical skill are created with the very simple goal: to illustrate other artworks. Such is the case with this magnificent etching representing a gold and precious stone goblet from the Louvre Museum collection.

Jacquemart is the acknowledged master of the art of reproductive illustration and this perception of his skills is borne out by one of the great connoisseurs of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Henri Beraldi, who asserts that Jacquemart is “one of the most astonishing etchers of his time and of all times.” In FL Leipnik’s (1924) “A History of French Etching” Beraldi is purported to say that “Jacquemart was the creator of a new ‘genre,’ the rendering of objects of art.” (p. 117). Of course, Jacquemart was not the first to render still-life curios, but as Leipnik points out: “he was certainly the first to portray that aspect of the surface-texture of curios which one may be permitted to call the reflection of the soul of the inanimate object” (ibid).

Leipnik’s notion that Jacquemart could capture the aura of inanimate objects may be a little farfetched, nevertheless, there are very few etchers that have the supreme technical skills of Jacquemart to visually communicate the physical attributes of the different surfaces represented.






Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Romance illustrations by Alméry Lobel-Riche


Alméry Lobel-Riche (1877–1950)
“Spanish Lovers” (descriptive title only), pair of related prints from an unknown publication (if a reader can help identify the publication and its date for these prints I will be very grateful).
Two drypoints (i.e. prints created by incising lines with a sharp needle into a metal plate without the use of acid) on wove paper.
Size of each print: (sheet) 28.4 x 19.2 cm; (plate) 22.7 x 17 cm
Idbury Prints offer a fine bibliographical outline of this artist: http://www.idburyprints.com/index.php?page=artist_view_details.php&arid=127

Condition: crisp, well-inked impressions in pristine condition with margins.

I am selling this pair of mildly erotic original prints for AU$122 (currently US$93.19/EUR85.63/GBP76.16 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world. If you are interested in purchasing these fascinating prints please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.












From a personal standpoint, these sensitively executed prints are erotica from a faraway age. They are genre of illustration that would fit well on the cover of a sexy—what is commonly called a “bodice-ripper”—Mills & Boon novel. If I were asked the reason why I originally purchased them, my answer would be simply: because they are such fun.

According to the writer, Pierre Mac Orlan:
"Lobel-Riche was always an artist deeply attracted to the disciplines loving calm and balance, the female beauty dominates when it exceeded the creations a little easier for gallantry. In the world of its classic designs and scholars in their classicism, the original light is that of beauty conceived in aesthetic mythologies." (https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alm%C3%A9ry_Lobel-Riche)