« The Sublime Emerges From The Bite »

The history of etching is closely related to the invention of paper by the Chinese, approximately 105 years A.D.
As far as the Western World is concerned, it had to wait until the 16th Century, with the introduction of techniques for paper making, coming from the East.
It is then that could be found the first etchings set on metal stand as well as the techniques for soft cutting, burin, etchings, ancestral gestures still applied today.
That the image be available to the largest number of people.


Intaglio Printmaking
Burin Engraving
Dry-Point Engraving
Stanley William Hayter's Method
They wrote the legend of engraiving
Hayter (Stanley William)

Intaglio Printmaking
"Intaglio printing" refers to ail those methods of etching or engraving on metal plates, usually copper or zinc, where the grooves retain ink while the upper surface is meticulously wiped clean.
There are two major technical approaches :
- In direct engraving, the metal is directly engraved with such tools as burins, dry-points, roulettes, or mezzotint rockers.
- Acid-bath methods comprise a number of approaches characterized by lines or textures etched by an acid that corrodes unprotected metal surfaces.

Burin Engraving
With its extremely sharp tip and a mushroom-shaped handle for dexterity, the burin tool produces clean lines, raising metal shavings in the process.
Burin techniques were originally developed to reproduce the visual qualifies of master paintings and drawings, but today they are used to create works of expressive originality.

Dry-Point Engraving
The dry-point needle has a round metal shaft with a sharp point.
It ploughs through the metal, raising a burr on either side of the line.
This fragile metal burr holds ink during printing and gives lines a soft, blurred quality.
However, the burr tends to wear down under the pressure of the press, so this method produces only very small editions unless the plate is steel-plated through electrolysis.

This term refers to those methods by which metal plates are etched in acid.
To make the matrix, the metal must be protected by varnish for white areas, and exposed where the drawing must be bitten by acid.
The prepared plate is then immersed in an acid bath and the metal etched more or less deeply, depending on the duration and strength of the bath.

Stanley William Hayter's Method
This method results in several colours from a single plate in a single pass.
The plate's matrix must be in three levels.
Three ink colours of different viscosities are used, and inking requires two rollers of varying hardness.
The method relies on the ability of less viscous inks to repel more viscous inks, similar to lithography.
The ink is thinned by adding linseed oil.
Thus, the liquid ink repels the viscous ink, and the two colours do not mix.
The effect of putting a liquid in over a viscous ink is different, the thicker base accepts the thinner top, and thus the two colours are blended.
The process begins with an initial intaglio inking using the thinnest colour.
The second, more viscous colour is then applied with a hard roller which deposits ink only on the surface, then a third colour, even more viscous, is applied with a soft roller.
It is also possible to reverse the order in which rollers are used, or inks applied.

Hayter (Stanley William)
Photo - Derek Hill

British citizen, trained as a scientist, he chose etching and painting to express himself. He settled in Paris in 1926. In 1927, he founded " l'Atelier 17 " (counterpoint), where numerous artists also worked (Vierra da Silva, Miro, Picasso, Ernst, Giacometti...). He adhered to the Surrealist Movement from 1934 to 1940.
He imagines and develops new techniques (Hayter Technique) and realizes an abstract work which is very rich in drawings.

Amazone 1945
Etching and soft varnish 62.2 X 40.3 cm
MOMA Museum, New York
Philip C.Johnson Foundation

They wrote the legend of engraving
Aldorfer Albrecht
La famille Bailly Baldung Grien Bellange Jacques Blake William
Bonnard Pierre Bosse Abraham Botticelli Boucher François
Brauner Victor Bresdin Rodolphe
Callot jacques Canaletto Carrache Agostino Caylus Anne de
Charlet Nicolas Corneille Michel I Corneille Michel II Cranach l’ancien
Debucourt Philibert L Degas Edgar Denon Dominique Derain André
Devéria Jacques Didot A Firmin Didot Firmin Dix Otto
Doré Gustave Dunoyer de Segonzac Durer Albrecht Duvet Jean
Etex Antoine Eisen Charles Engelmann Godefroi Ensor James
Finiguerra Maso Forain Jean-Louis Fragonard Jean
Giacomelli Mario Goerg Edouard Goya Francisco de Graf Urs
Granville Jean Gravelot Hubert François
Heckel Erich Hogarth Willam Holbein Hans Huet Paul
Johannot Tony Jörn Asger
Kubin Alfred
Lucas de Leyde
Mantegna Andrea Manuel Deutsch Messagerie Jean Miro Joan
Monfreid Daniel de Morandi Giorgio Munch Edvard
Nolde Emil
Orbay François d’ Oudry Jean Batiste
Pascin Jules Picasso Pablo Pollaiolo Antonio del Prouvé Victor
Redon Odilon Rembrandt Robida Albert Rops Félicien
Rosa Salvatore Roty Louis Oscar Rouault Georges Ruysdael Jacob van
Schiele Egon Schmidt-Rottluff Karl Sutherland Graham
Tiepolo Giambattista Turner Joseph
Vallatton Felix Van Laar Pieter Van Ostade Adriaen Vieira da Silva
Waroquier Henry de Whistler James