Published on October 28th, 2014 | by Marius


Engraving as an art major

Razvan-Constantin Caratană

Theodor Aman founded the School of Fine Arts in 1864 and it is known that in the beginning there were four sections: architecture, painting, sculpture and engraving, and drawing courses are co. In 1904 Department of Architecture have to get past the École des Beaux-Arts in Bucharest, and engraving department would be disbanded immediately after the Second World War, and in its place would appear Charts. It happens in 1947, after the communist regime. It was abolished on the grounds that he could multiply or propagate the manifest through etching presses. It was however restored by the very attributes make propaganda faithful communist regime, the synthetic image-convincing, by multiplying and spreading cheap.

Engraving services to some important fields of science, and multiplying their topics, worth, also, bold. It's anatomical drawings, geographical, Botanical, documentation, for Media Coverage, in almanacs or different publications. Such images circulated, in the wider world, constrained by the condition of being correct, explicit, repeatable hundred copies, able to cover the increasing geographical.

Areas crucial to fulfilling our, and architecture, Music, literature, geography, astronomy, history, anatomy, zoology, botany, philosophy, religion, Mathematics, Physics, chemistry, education, economy, were served by etching, by Precious transpositions in the image of scientific concepts and descriptions circulated, By assisting professional multiplication.

The importance of fairness printing banknotes, relevance and accuracy of maps, illustrate historical events and archiving, numerous newspapers and other publications were made possible by this domain, timid explorat, Engraving. Louis Hourticqmenţiona one time dat CA "Plastic language knows, ca literatura, frontiere lingvistice; He easily pass over countries and over centuries ". Only simply because stampa be multiplied, enabling a quick and efficient transmission, we accept the idea of ​​passing easily across borders, barriers between countries, promoting knowledge of art in places more or less distant geographical.

Note is that, until emergence photography, entire artistic production was known only by the reproduction of works of art through engraving, and creators of art found in this direction a broad horizon of activity, both through reproductions "interpretative" of those works painted, and by making special designs made for the transposition and engraving.

Traffic and trade stamps that become increasingly more intense, resulted in a widespread phenomenon, reaching tens of thousands of stamps to decorate modest homes that could not afford expensive paintings. This phenomenon is happening in the country, and Europe. No other branch of art does not allow remote contact as does the engraving, and we know precisely that this area was one of the relevant factors in the spread of the exchange of ideas, concepts and artistic visions between countries. Also, stampa longer a relevant way to archive images created, which over time have been lost, fire, distrus etc. and various works of art – în special tablouri, objects, buildings – can be made known to us only through prints, which acquires the status of document, able to provide information to reconstruct / restore those objectives.

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Today we can printing reproduction, with which we can inform other civilizations or peoples art. All arts activities for the whole world at our disposal, constituting means of educating, literacy and information. Artists constantly trying to overcome geographical boundaries of the area to which they belong, extizându-area knowledge and contacts with the world of personalities from different parts of the world.

If we intend to define engraving as the sum of human actions, the type of incisions, of digging, the obtaining of grooves, the excavation of parts of different materials,, such as stone, wood, metal, osul ș.a.m.d., in order to obtain signs or pictures we undertake right thing. Indeed, these actions and artifacts might be called etching and, respectively, Engraved items. The purpose of these actions is paramount decorative, Beauty or customization of common household objects, like weapons, finery, Tools, religious objects and other.

But when these objects are loaded with ink, to be printed on paper, several copies, referring to the purpose and results of engraving as an artistic genre belonging arts. This meaning of the term and the engraving is covered by our writing, which mainly aims location engraving, as a genre by itself, between Fine Arts Major.

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To place while engraving origins, we can not evade the first point of engraving, the decorative, above-mentioned. From this point of view we are entitled to say that engraving, that human activity, origins as old as mankind.

Etching"Is a term derived from the German for"dig"Meaning"a săpa” – it may have different meanings: refers to plate engraved "carved" stone, metal, plastic, wood, linoleum etc. image by the artist to be passed through the printing process (printing each per se) – or other – with reference to the art and craft in support Gravatai (fie el lemn, metal, stone etc.) by the methods used and results from two points of view: artistic și tehnic.

On the one hand, leaving traces of incised, Better resistance while, seems to be a natural-human, ancestral chiar, transmitted until today, exhibiting legitimate desire of man to mark their presence and intentions areas surrounding objects. All the more, we can not neglect aesthetics, desire to beautify common objects such as ceramics or special joints, Weapons and armor, jewelery or coins and seals. Altamira (Spain), Lascaux (Franța) after Hands Cave (Argentina) planet are some of the sites that have similar visual representations – for example hand.

Primitive man, driven by the desire to leave traces of himself and his fellows, forever, has softened palm liquid paints, obtained from soot and mineral pigments pressed a cavern wall. The result was such an engraving, the most fully respect the principle of high printing. Another option was to splash around hand colored substance Wall, one specific outcome all engraving, template technique.

Oldest people, and Sumerians, Phoenicians, Egyptians and Greeks, Indians, Chinese or Japanese gravure used for communication purposes, customization of goods or aesthetic purposes. Small engrave cylinders, rotate on the surface of soft clay to create names and sentences, communicating the identity of a famous manufacturer, carved woodwork after a predetermined plan, încerneluite and pressed repeatedly on canvas created ornaments for dresses etc..

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A first route-building as a distinct artistic genre would be the achievement of important innovations, improvements, technical solutions always renewed, more elaborate means of incision, in order to obtain some form of visual expression more convincing. The quality of materials was always serious inbunatatiti, in the categories of quality woods or metal plates. Quality engraving tools, the dăltiţelor and those also increased to stunning performances, like engraving signs of fine-grained steel, with steel chisels. The performance of such tools demanded close dialogues with top metallurgy and advanced methods of sharpening amazing.

Continuing the theme of situating engraving with painting and sculpture should be noted some similarities but also differences, in materials and techniques perfected over time, gender-specific part. Engraving, as painting and sculpture, is undoubtedly a means of artistic expression.

As Technique differs painting to sculpture technique, and achievement in engraving technique is different from the other two. In fact in the engraving, depending on the material and the means of incision, we are dealing with several techniques and types of pattern, so as you will see in the following chapters. The advantage of multiplying, without one exclusive engraving, are clear advantages for sculpture and painting is almost unused, totally inappropriate with the idea of ​​painting. Field engraving gained popularity, prestige and providing, distribution of images in multiple copies, thus contributing to strengthening, The time, training of good artistic taste.

As, rigors activity collector of prints have become increasingly stringent, stressing the importance accorded, emphasizing respect for the artistic quality of the engravings. True collectors of stamps were extremely rigorous selection criteria. There never collect a specimen that has any dirt or oil stain on the front or back of the paper, even if it is performed by any recognized master. There will be acquired as time stamp will not last, it will be "eaten" by any bacteria or fungus. Another criterion is that of good observations on the specimen signature, any suspicion regarding this aspect cancel engraving value.

Stages and the final prints are highly relevant. Preceding stage has a higher value than the final because it is unique, is a transitional stage to the final. Overall, Serious artists retain transitional stages, preferring only the presentation of the final. Brief transitional stages with fully reveals the creative process of the artist, a complex process which has just all intents creator. Famous artists such as Edgar Degas, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissaro, Pablo Picasso etc.. are also known to be working – image "suffering" plastic interventions more or less significant, The final image is a complex one and its elements are systematically clarified (episodic) while still working. Such intermediate stages are extremely rare, and thus their value is one greater, but not because of the uniqueness that is testimony, evidence of materialisation of a creative process in stages with risk-taking aesthetics and visual grammar.

Another specific aspect of this area of ​​work is assisted by possible corrections. The engravings are rare or corrective interventions comeback, operations which are carried out with great precision. Engraving means a very specific artistic intent, equally accurate and a perfect mastery of technique, Unlike painting, where you can make corrections whenever needed, to achieve a final result. We can say that it needs a serious rigor and virtuosity, unlike the painter, which may intervene permanently, to change color stains do not agree.

The engraver can see the result just after raising the printed paper on board, operation is performed prior to the preparation of the plate, of gravare, The încerneluire and finally print job through the media of etching.

As in other artistic fields, were of great importance to exchanges and cultural movements instructive, engravers many Northern Europeans taking aesthetic cues from precious Italian climate, and Southern European artists taking German and Flemish artists experience.


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In the mid-fifteenth century artisans corporations are increasing, as it begins to be evident that the practice of engraving (a new technique of expression), presents real potential for cultural needs. Such, de pildă, mănăstirele were among the first to have enjoyed the benefits engraving, prints and illustrations from manuscripts.

Already starting to develop the first corporate laBruges, Anvers și Louvain; and in Italy, the great cultural centers such as: Rome, Florence, Veneția etc. Also in this period appear first engravers, Editors, and the former merchant prints, all these factors to predict the future by an avalanche of engravers century masters and amateur prints – early sixteenth century European engraving means early peak and beyond.

Masters arrive at some engraving unmatched performance (Albrecht Dürer, Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Peter Paul Rubens, Anthony van Dyck, Rembrandt van Rijn etc.). I think we can do here some relevant comparisons between Italian and northern renaissance, important differences in the evolution of engraving, visual art and beyond. In the north of Europe is supplied by engraving works heavily Italian and the Greek (great Erasmus said this in one of his writings), and this approach nordic prints broadcast Nordics incites artists to move to Italy.

The benefit of knowledge "almost" Italian aesthetic patterns, supported by ancient art, refinement of compositional constructions, aesthetics and human morphology, provided by Italian Renaissance artists, assisted monuments, relics and ancient writings, exerted a beneficial influence on artists Norse. At their turn, Italian artists were sensitive to gains of Flemish art. In the engraving, the early sixteenth century, can speak of a considerable advance in northern engraving, a visual language already well developed and customized. It can, however, say that it was a mutual influence, beneficial for both parties.

But making a leap across time, the first decades of the twentieth century, we notice and retain a sentence that would give much deserved engraving condition. In 1927 la Florența, a large exhibition of fine art (with painters, sculptors, gravori etc. around the world), have to officially declare that "ENGRAVING IS A MAJOR ART", alongside painting and sculpture. The truth of this statement, attested by historians and art critics, artists confirmed practitioners and academics, of colecţionari, was and would be supported by a large body of work, already on the World Heritage.


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Razvan-Constantin Caratană (n,en. 1985, Tulcea) is serious, designer, university teacher, Contemporary art curator and PhD in Visual Arts. Lives and works in Bucharest. Of 2013 is Visiting Professor at the Academy of Fine Arts – Tournai, Belgium and the Academy of Fine Arts "Albertina" – Turin, Italy. The Director of the National Biennial of Contemporary Art "Aegyssus", Tulcea, of 2009 and the National Biennial of Contemporary Engraving "Danubius", Tulcea. Is a member of Board Graphics Bucharest Branch of the Artists Union of Romania, of 2012, member of the Artists Union of Romania, Graphics Bucharest Branch, and member of the artistic group "6 x 6". He has over 150 collective and group exhibitions nationally and internationally (Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Franța, Italy, Japan, Republica Moldova, Spain and Ukraine); multiple participations art camps, workshop-uri, symposia, Conference, scientific sessions.


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