Until 16 April. This exhibition traces the development of engraving techniques from the 1400s to the present day through 150 works from the collection of the Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica. 10.00-19.00.
The Calcografia or National Print Cabinet behind the Trevi fountain not only owns the biggest treasure trove of print matrixes in the world, but has a vast holding of the prints themselves. Last year it organised a survey of the oldest form of printmaking, working on wood, xilography. This year, with the present show, it deals with dry printing on copper, steel and zinc.
We have Schngauer, Drer, Mantegna, Antonio Carracci, Giulio Romano, Pollaiolo, Rembrandt, delving deeper and deeper into the exquisite field of Renaissance print experimentation. There is also an immense print of Michelangelos Last Judgement made by Giorgio Ghisi in 1549. A Quercino Madonna painting is made into a print by Pasqualini. The Slaughter of the Innocents by Raphael is illustrated as a print by Raimondi. All these linear intricacies are worth careful study, not only by the connoisseur.
Of our own era there are delicate or sturdy examples of printmaking by such divergent artists as De Nittis, Beckmann, Picasso, Morandi, by the wizards of contemporary plate cutting William Stanley Hayter and Guido Strazza, and even by such unlikely personages as Man Ray and Ceccobelli.
Because of the embarrassment of riches the selection is uneven. Still this is a great opportunity to lose yourself in the forests of one of the noblest art forms of the west. In a didactic vein there are many huge original copper plates and a host of tools. Edith Schloss
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La stampa calcografica da Mantegna a Chagall.
Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica, Calcografia, Via della Stamperia 6, tel. 06692050630.
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