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A beautiful new history of an evocative and enduring drawing technique

From the Middle Ages to the present, master draftsmen have used the technique of metalpoint to create some of the most beautiful and technically accomplished drawings in the history of art. Drawing in Silver and Gold examines the history of this evocative medium, in which a metal stylus is used on a specially prepared surface to create lines of astonishing delicacy.

This beautifully illustrated book examines the practice of metalpoint over six centuries, in the work of artists ranging from Leonardo, Dürer, and Rembrandt to Otto Dix and Jasper Johns. A team of authors—curators, conservators, scientists—address variations in technique across time and between different schools, incorporating new scientific analysis, revealing patterns of use, and providing a rare demonstration of the medium's range and versatility. They reappraise famous metalpoints of the Renaissance and shed new light on infrequently studied periods, such as the seventeenth century and the Victorian silverpoint revival.

A new examination of an exquisite but not thoroughly understood medium, Drawing in Silver and Gold offers fresh interpretations of a practice central to the history of drawing and will serve as the most authoritative reference on metalpoints for years to come.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780691166124
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 05/26/2015
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 8.10(w) x 11.30(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

At the National Gallery of Art, Stacey Sell is associate curator of old master prints and drawings, Kimberly Schenck is head of paper conservation, and John Oliver Hand is curator of northern Renaissance paintings. Bruce Weber is curator of paintings and sculpture at the Museum of the City of New York. At the British Museum, Hugo Chapman is keeper and curator of Italian and French drawings, Giulia Bartrum is assistant keeper of German and Swiss prints and drawings, An Van Camp is assistant keeper of Dutch and Flemish prints and drawings, Joanna Russell is Mellon Fellow and conservation scientist, Judith Rayner is senior paper conservator, and Jenny Bescoby is paper conservator in the department of conservation and scientific research.

Table of Contents

Directors’ Foreword, Earl A. Powell III and Nei l MacGregor xi

Lenders to the Exhibition xiii

Introduction, Stacey Sell 1

Drawings Under Scrutiny: The Materials and Techniques of Metalpoint, Kimberly Schenck 9

Masters of Silverpoint in the Netherlandish Renaissance, John Oliver Hand 25

Silverpoint Drawings by German and Swiss Renaissance Artists, Giulia Bartrum 63

The Rise and Decline of Metalpoint Drawing in Renaissance Italy, Hugo Chapman 101

Metalpoint Drawings in the Low Countries in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, An Van Camp 145

The Silverpoint Revival in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Stacey Sell 189

Modern and Contemporary Drawing in Metalpoint, Bruce Weber 225

The Technical Examination of Metalpoint Drawings, Joanna Russe ll, Judith Rayner, and Jenny Bescoby 261

Exhibition Checklist 275

Selected Bibliography 291

Acknowledgments 303

Index 307

Photography Credits 313

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"Excellent. This should become a standard book about an area of drawing that has been difficult for the layman properly to understand and appreciate."—David Scrase, author of Italian Drawings at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

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