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Aquatint: a painterly intaglio technique

While printmakers have always wanted to present some shading or grayscale in their work, until the discovery of aquatint in the 17th century, doing so was technically very challenging.  And with a few notable exceptions, such as in the etchings of Francisco Goya, aquatint, this most painterly of intaglio techniques, remained unpracticed by most printmakers.  Aquatint started to gain popularity in the latter part of the 19th century, likely as etching was being rediscovered by Impressionists.  These artists were often eager to replicate in their prints the atmospheric qualities found in their paintings.  Aquatint, with its granular texture, lends itself to effects that offer an endless range of shading, both in black and white and in color.  Because it was practiced so masterfully by artists of the Modern Era, we here at Armstrong Fine Art are true “suckers” for a finely crafted aquatint.  Here are a few we have, or have had in the past.

Louis Legrand - Les Blanchisseuses - color aquatint etching - belle epoque - redhead - washer women Sold
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Washer Women

LEGRAND, Louis

Les Blanchisseuses (original French title) Color aquatint and etching on simili-japon.References: Arwas 186; Exsteen 163.From the album Faune Paris...

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Jacques Villon - Marcel Duchamp - Le Chef d'Oeuvre - Masterpiece - Mother holding daughter drawing - Belle Epoque Sold
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The Masterpiece

VILLON, Jacques

Le Chef d’Oeuvre (original French title) Drypoint, aquatint and roulette printed in four colors, à la poupée (yet from two registered plates) on wo...

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Charles Houdard - Charles Louis Marcel Houdard - Les Grenouilles - Frogs - dedicated to Henri Guerard - detail Sold
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Frogs

HOUDARD, Charles

Grenouilles (original French title) Color aquatint on chine paper, 1894.References: Stein and Karshan 36; Boyer and Cate 36.Artist’s proof aside fr...

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Bernard Boutet de Monvel - Les Marcheurs - men in suit bowler hat cane - dandy art - 19th century hipsters - detail
$1,700

The Walkers

BOUTET DE MONVEL, Bernard

Les Marcheurs (original French title) Color aquatint on thick wove paper.Ref: non in BN-IFF or in Addade.Stated to be an edition of 60, which is ex...

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Allan Osterlind - Le Bapteme a Treboul - Baptism - Brittany Bretagne - tradition - color aquatint - detail
$750

The Baptism in Treboul

OSTERLIND, Allan

Le Baptême à Tréboul (original French title)  Color aquatint and etching on Arches wove paper.Edition unknown, but like most of the artist’s work s...

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