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Thursday 14 October 2021

Adolphe Appian’s etching with drypoint, “Bords d'un Canal”, c1877

Adolphe Appian (1818–1898)

“Bords d'un Canal” (aka “Banks of Canal”), c1877 (note that neither Proute nor Jennings propose a date for this etching, but circa 1877 seems appropriate as it is catalogued between prints dated 1876 and 1888), printed by the brothers (?) of Jean-Marie Fugère (1818–1882) and published by the Société des Amis des Arts de Lyon.

Etching with drypoint on chine collé on cream wove paper with wide margins backed with a support sheet.

Size: (sheet) 33.4 x 40.2 cm; (plate [soft]) 22.4 x 28.5 cm; (chine collé) 19.9 x 26.2 cm; (image borderline) 18 x 25.8 cm.

Inscribed in plate within the image borderline: (centre) “Société des Amis des Arts de Lyon”; (right corner) “LYON, Imp. Fugère Fres.”

State ii (of ii) with addition of the publication details.

Curtis & Prouté 47 ii (Atherton Cutiis & Paul Prouté 1968, “Adolphe Appian son Oeuvre Gravé et Lithographié”, Paris, Paul Prouté, [n.p.] cat. no. 47 ii); Jennings 42 (Herbert H Jennings 1925Adolphe Appian (essay) in “Print Collector’s Quarterly,” vol. 12, no. 1, p. 116, cat. no. 42 [see]).

In Hamerton’s 1876 edition of “Etching and Etchers”, Hamerton offers the following interesting insights about Appian’s prints: “…his [Appian’s] work is that each plate, however large or however small it may be, is conceived from the first as a whole, and the first conception is never departed from for the disproportionate realisation of some obtrusive detail.” Going further, “…Appian sees always in masses, and gives quite as much detail as is consistent with the preservation of the mass” (pp. 202–03).

Condition: a richly inked, strong and well-printed impression with generous margins and laid onto a support of archival (millennium quality) washi paper. Beyond an area of thinnest in the margin at lower left (not visible unless the sheet is held to the light) and a closed fracture on the lower right corner of the platemark (now supported by the backing sheet), the sheet is in an excellent condition with no holes, folds, losses, abrasions, significant stains or foxing.

I am selling this marvellous etching that in one sense sparkles with light and space, but, from a very different way of looking, seems to be overlaid inexplicably with a heavy melancholic mood, for the total cost of AU$315 (currently US$234.34/EUR200.77/GBP170.19 at the time of this listing) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this very beautiful etching executed by an artist with a strong personal vision (as exemplified by this print) and close connection with the Barbizon School, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


  1. Beautiful. If it didn't say etching I would have thought it to be a drypoint.
    Regards from Denmark, Christian

  2. I'm sure you're correct Christian. I didn't have my thinking cap on right as there is certainly extensive drypoint work in the print. I'll make the correction


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