The exhibition "Printed Matters: Chalcography from the Louvre to the Consortium", curated by Franck Gautherot and Seungduk Kim, is on show at the Consortium Museum from 26 October to 31 March 2024, and features nearly seventy engravings from the Chalcography collection, combining contemporary creations with historical engravings from the imitation tradition. The exhibition offers a sense of the present, where reinvented heritage and heritage-based creation come together.
Among the works selected are imitation engravings after Botticelli, Corot, Du¨rer, Greuze, Mantegna, Moreau, Raphaël, Rembrandt, Rigaud, Solario, Titien and Watteau, themselves works by engravers that meet the modern creations of Léonard Foujita, Marcel Gromaire and Jacques Villon, and contemporary works by Miquel Barceló, Louise Bourgeois, Balthazar Burckhard, Tony Cragg, Peter Doig, François Morellet, Robert Morris, Giuseppe Penone, Markus Raetz, Arnulf Rainer, Sophie Ristelhueber, Kiki Smith and Yan Pei-Ming. In addition, the most recent creation of the Chalcographie du Louvre, Constellation du Louvre, by Jean-Marie Appriou, an artist who was celebrated at the Consortium Museum in 2019, will be shown from October 2023.
Since 1977, the Consortium Museum in Dijon has embodied one of the strongest and most radical voices in contemporary programming in France and around the world. Sensitive to the transformations of the medium, the exhibition is a continuation of their constant research into the medium, but also of their concern to write art histories. The exhibition will return to the 'sensitive hanging' advocated by lovers of ancient art - following the same rules of expertise that the Consortium Museum applies to today's art.
In 2022-2023, the Consortium Museum planned "The Drawing Centre Show", in which artists were invited to send drawings in electronic format to be printed at the Consortium Museum, and these were hung on the walls as they arrived. Some of the most eminent figures in contemporary art took part.
The Louvre's Chalcography brings together many different histories. Originating in the policy of Louis XIV, who intended to have the great events of his reign engraved and distribute the works to members of the Court and foreign ambassadors, it was transformed at the time of the Revolution, when the plates became part of the national collections. In the 19th century, Chalcography became a tool for cultural democratisation, with the design of so-called "imitation" engravings, which spread the image of famous works throughout society. In the early 1980s, Chalcographie initiated a policy of inviting leading figures in contemporary art to design a plate, developed in collaboration with the Rmn-GP's Ateliers d'art, for inclusion in the collections of the Musée du Louvre. After its creation, the Ateliers d'art de la Rmn-GP took charge of printing the prints and marketing them to the public - following a simple principle: the prints are, by nature, unlimited, thus continuing the momentum of the origins.
This model, rooted in the expertise of the masters of art at the Rmn-GP's Ateliers d'art and the talent of engraving artists, is both timeless and contemporary. It is both heritage-based and open to creativity, and is in line with the development, in the avant-garde and in contemporary art, of editions in multiple formats, which make partially dematerialised works accessible to the widest possible audience, thereby extending the field of reception of art.
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