The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The Clark explores the art of copying - "Copycat: Reproducing Works of Art" opens
Lion Devouring a Horse, 1844, by Eugène Delacroix. Lithograph on chine collé on paper© Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA.

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA.- The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute opened its latest exhibition, Copycat: Reproducing Works of Art, on January 29. Exploring the line between innovation and imitation, the exhibition features 50 prints and photographs that are both original works of art and repetitions of drawings, prints, paintings, sculptures, and architecture created by other artists. The exhibition highlights the complex process of copying by studying replications of many rarely seen works from the Clark’s permanent collection, including those by Albrecht Dürer, Paul Cézanne, Eugène Delacroix, Rembrandt van Rijn, Roger Fenton, and Édouard Manet, among others. The exhibition also marks the first public presentation of one of the Clark’s recent acquisitions, Jean Dughet’s series The Seven Sacraments. Copycat will be on view in the Clark’s Manton Research Center building through April 1, 2012.

Copycat is one of the ClarkNOW exhibitions that the Institute announced last autumn in conjunction with the launch of its campus expansion project. ClarkNOW is a series of more than 60 programs that the Clark will present in Williamstown, New York, and abroad over the next two years as it extends the Clark’s reach and engagement during a time of transformation on its campus.

“ClarkNOW is about experimentation, challenging us to bring our collections and intellectual programs to U.S. and international audiences in new and exciting ways,” said Michael Conforti, director of the Clark. “With this exhibition, we invited new curatorial voices to lead us in looking at some of the works in our permanent collection with fresh eyes.”

The exhibition was curated by Alexis Goodin, Independent art historian and part-time Curatorial Research Assistant at the Clark, and James Pilgrim, a current graduate student in the Clark/Williams graduate program in the history of art, working in collaboration with Richard Rand, The Robert and Martha Berman Lipp Senior Curator, and Jay A. Clarke, the Clark’s Manton Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs.

The Art of Copying
Copying was a common artistic practice during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Artists made copies as part of their training, to demonstrate or improve their skill, or to reproduce an image through a variety of printmaking techniques. An artist might replicate a work as a tribute to a master, as Johann Ladenspelder intended with his copy of Albrecht Dürer’s Adam and Eve—or an artist might copy a work with the intent of forgery, as Marcantonio Raimondi copied Dürer’s Joachim’s Offering Rejected, part of the Life of the Virgin series. Marcantonio’s notorious engraved copies of this series, included in the exhibition, contained Dürer’s famous “AD” monogram and were intended to deceive collectors. When Dürer learned of Marcantonio’s scheme, he took the Italian artist to court, where it was decided that Marcantonio could continue making copies, but that he could no longer include Dürer’s initials.

Painters have long been interested in finding ways to reproduce their work, whether to enhance their reputations, explore ideas in different mediums, share their work with a wider public, or profit by the sale of multiple versions of a single image. Some painters created their own prints, while others worked closely with professional reproductive printmakers. After the 1895 retrospective of his work, Paul Cézanne created prints to capitalize on his newfound fame; his print Large Bathers is based on Bathers at Rest, a painting he created twenty years earlier. John Constable worked with David Lucas to create prints after his paintings for the series English Landscape, which was published to promote Constable’s work to a wider audience. For the print Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows, Constable worked closely with Lucas, but was ultimately dissatisfied with the print, remarking, “I am playing the devil with the Salisbury—for on looking at an early proof I find we have ‘lost everything.’” David Lucas reworked the print; Constable approved the changes and gave his son Alfred the rare late proof featured in the exhibition.

Jean Dughet’s series The Seven Sacraments is another example of creative collaboration. This series is one of only three known complete sets of Dughet’s most ambitious undertaking. Dughet was a notable French print publisher of the seventeenth century and, as brother-in-law of the great painter Nicholas Poussin, also served as his secretary. His series of large-plate prints closely follows the first of Poussin’s The Seven Sacraments series of paintings. In his print The Sacrament of Ordination (Christ Presenting the Keys to Saint Peter), however, Dughet created a unique interpretation of Poussin’s work. He copied figures from Poussin’s first series but set them against the background of Poussin’s second series, melding two of Poussin’s paintings. This dramatic change suggests that Poussin was involved in the process and approved of Dughet’s modification of his work.

Experiments in Printmaking
In the eighteenth century, artists developed printmaking techniques that yielded more accurate replications of drawings. Chiaroscuro woodcuts and, later, aquatint allowed printmakers to imitate wash drawings and watercolors. In his print Allegorical Composition: Virtue overcoming Sin, Johann Gottleib Prestel used aquatint with gold woodcut additions to imitate the grandeur of Jacopo Ligozzi’s drawing. Two other new innovations in printmaking, mezzotint process and color printing, were stimulated by the popularity of reproductive prints, works specifically made to replicate drawings and paintings. Widely accessible, these prints were collected either in a portfolio or framed for display in the home. Georges Keating’s Her Grace the Duchess of Devonshire and the Right Honourable Lady Georgiana Cavendish (after Joshua Reynolds’s painting Georgiana, the Duchess of Devonshire, with her Daughter, Lady Georgiana Cavendish) was especially popular because its subject was famous for her charm, political convictions, and destructive gambling habits. In this mezzotint, Keating shows the duchess playing with her first child in an appealing depiction of motherhood, further adding to the sitter’s appeal.

A photographer brings his point of view to the work he “copies” by making decisions about angles, lighting, and composition, among many other factors. At first glance, the sculpture Pericles Giving Crowns to the Artists appears to be the main focus of Édouard Baldus’s photograph Statue of Pericles with Standing Figure in the Tuileries. However, Baldus also includes a man wearing a smock at the base of the statue who mimics the sculpture’s pose and dress. Baldus has captured the man’s faint form in contrast with the solid, crisply defined sculpture, by which he may have meant to suggest the impermanence of life.

Visitors also have the opportunity to view prints created after paintings from the Clark’s collection. Examples include Charles Courtry’s print Trumpeter of the Hussars, after Théodore Géricault’s painting and Benedetto Montagna’s Virgin and Child (after Bartolomeo Montagna).

Today's News

January 30, 2012

Philadelphia Museum of Art exhibition explores van Gogh's deep immersion into nature

Newly renovated and freshly installed 19th-Century French galleries reopen at National Gallery of Art

Weegee: Murder Is My Business at the International Center of Photography in New York

The Clark explores the art of copying - "Copycat: Reproducing Works of Art" opens

Indian tribes join forces to save petroglyph site dating as far back as A.D. 1200

Aargauer Kunsthaus opens monographic exhibition featuring Swiss artist Roman Signer

Rachel Kneebone presents new artwork alongside sculptures by Rodin at the Brooklyn Museum

George Custer dealer Christopher Kortlander seeks return of seized artifacts

Amalia Pica and Karsten Födinger open exhibition at Kunst Halle St. Gallen

Japanese composer and visual artist Ryoji Ikeda presents exhibition at Hamburger Bahnhof

Kunsthalle Zurich announces opening date in new permanent home in the Lowenbrau art complex

Celebrities and unknowns alike star in presentation of nearly forty rarely or never-seen Andy Warhol Polaroids

Exhibition on the production and culture of tobacco as seen through the eyes of Xu Bing

Robert Rauschenberg Foundation announces recipients for the inaugural round of its artistic grants

MoMA P.S. 1 announces a solo exhibition of Darren Bader

Media pioneer Zbigniew Rybczynski and Gábor Bódy in an exhibition at the ZKM Media Museum

Egyptians move to reclaim streets through graffiti

Frederick's Montezuma: Power and Meaning in the Prussian Court Opera opens in Berlin

Israeli artist Ruven Kuperman opens exhibition at Kit Schulte Contemporary Art

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Original 'Star Wars' creators lift lid on special effects challenges

2.- Lost '$170 million Caravaggio' snapped up before French auction

3.- Mansell's 'Red Five' on pole for Bonhams sale

4.- Impressionism's 'forgotten woman' shines in new Paris show

5.- Sotheby's to auction the best-surviving NASA videotape recordings of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing

6.- Exhibition explores Dutch and Spanish painting of the 16th and 17th centuries

7.- Cyprus discovers 'first undisturbed Roman shipwreck'

8.- Sotheby's unveils 'Treasures from Chatsworth' with Leonardo Da Vinci drawing, Lucian Freud portraits, and more

9.- Infamous botched art restoration in Spain gets makeover

10.- 1958 Gibson Flying V Korina played by Dave Davies to grab center stage in Heritage Auctions' sale

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful