Printing Colour 1400-1700

History, Techniques, Functions and Receptions


In Printing Colour 1400–1700, Ad Stijnman and Elizabeth Savage offer the first handbook of early modern colour printmaking before 1700 (when most such histories begin), creating a new, interdisciplinary paradigm for the history of graphic art. It unveils a corpus of thousands of individual colour prints from across early modern Europe, proposing art historical, bibliographical, technical and scientific contexts for understanding them and their markets. The twenty-three contributions represent the state of research in this still-emerging field. From the first known attempts in the West until the invention of the approach we still use today (blue-red-yellow-black/‘key’, now CMYK), it demonstrates that colour prints were not rare outliers, but essential components of many early modern book, print and visual cultures.
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Biographical Note

Ad Stijnman PhD (Amsterdam) FRHistS, is a researcher on historical printmaking materials and processes at the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. He has published monographs and numerous articles on the practical aspects of historical printing and printmaking techniques, including Engraving and Etching 1400-2000 (Archetype 2012). Elizabeth Savage PhD (Cambridge), is a 2015-18 British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at The John Rylands Research Institute, University of Manchester. Her research into early modern colour printing techniques has won two international awards and been published in leading journals.

Review Quote

“a major advance in our knowledge of the production of prints.” Roger Gaskell, Ffawyddog, Crickhowell. In: The Library, 7.17.4 (December 2016), pp. 453-461. "Every essay is amply supported by images and, as is only to be expected from Brill, the publisher of the Handpress World series, and the printer, Drukkerij Wilco B.V. of Amersfoort, the superb quality of the figures, not least in the matter of colour accuracy, meets the high demands of this much-needed book." Timothy Wilks, Southampton Solent University. In: Journal of the Printing Historical Society, New Series 25 (Winter 2016), pp. 92-93.

Table of contents

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS FOREWORD - Ad Stijnman and Elizabeth Savage PREFACE: THE PROBLEM OF PRINTING IN COLOUR - Peter Parshall ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS INTRODUCTION: A HISTORICAL OVERVIEW OF PRINTED COLOUR BEFORE 1700 - Ad Stijnman and Elizabeth Savage SECTION 1: AN INTRODUCTION TO COLOUR IN PRINTMAKING 1400–1700 Chapter 1: Materials and Techniques for Early Colour Printing - Ad Stijnman and Elizabeth Savage Chapter 2: Colour Printing in Relief before c.1700: A Technical History - Elizabeth Savage Chapter 3: Colour Printing in Intaglio before c.1700: A Technical History - Ad Stijnman SECTION 2: THE ADVENT OF COLOUR PRINTING, C.1400–1500 Chapter 4: Colour Stamping in the Late Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries: Technical Sources and Workshop Practice - Doris Oltrogge Chapter 5: The Fust and Schöffer Office and the Printing of the Two-Colour Initials in the 1457 Mainz Psalter- Mayumi Ikeda Chapter 6: Colour-Printed Pasteprints, 1460s–1480s - Andreas Uhr Chapter 7: The Birgittines of The Netherlands: Experimental Printers and Colourists - Kathryn M. Rudy   SECTION 3: THE RENAISSANCE IN COLOUR, C.1476–1600 Chapter 8: A Printer’s Art: The Development and Influence of Colour Printmaking in the German Lands, c.1476–c.1600 - Elizabeth Savage Chapter 9: Hans Wechtlin and the Production of German Colour Woodcuts - Alice Klein Chapter 10: Ugo da Carpi’s Diogenes - Naoko Takahatake Chapter 11: The Chiaroscuro Woodcut Printmaking of Ugo da Carpi, Niccolò Vicentino and Antonio da Trento: Technique in Relation to Artistic Style - Linda Stiber Morenus Chapter 12: A Technical Study of Sixteenth-Century Italian Chiaroscuro Woodcuts - Beth A. Price, Nancy Ash, Haddon A. Dine, Shelley Langdale, Ken Sutherland, Lucia Burgio and Jo-Fan Huang Chapter 13: ‘Divine, August and Immortal’: The Potentials and Limitations of Colour Printing in the Low Countries, c.1555 - Edward H. Wouk SECTION 4: VIVID MANNERISM, C.1588–1650 Chapter 14: Hendrick Goltzius’s Chiaroscuro Woodcuts Revisited- Marjolein Leesberg Chapter 15: Dürer in Chiaroscuro: Early Modern Graphic Aesthetics and the Posthumous Production of Colour Prints - Anja Grebe Chapter 16: The ‘Camaïeu’ Print in Seventeenth-Century Paris: On the Origins of Multi-tonal Printmaking in France - Alexander Dencher SECTION 5: PRODUCT INNOVATION AND COMMERCIAL ENTERPRISE, C.1620 –1700 Chapter 17: On Hercules Segers’s ‘Printed Paintings’ - Jun Nakamura Chapter 18: Opus typo-chromaticum: The Colour Prints of Johannes Teyler - Simon Turner Chapter 19: Colourful Topography: A Short-Lived Practice in Amsterdam Print Publishing around 1700 - Elmer Kolfin and Marrigje Rikken CONCLUSION: PRINTING COLOUR AFTER 1700 Jacob Christoff Le Blon and the Invention of Trichromatic Colour Printing, c.1710 - Ad Stijnman APPENDIX 1: CHRONOLOGY APPENDIX 2: GLOSSARY BIBLIOGRAPHY INDEX


All interested in late medieval/renaissance art, graphic art, the history of the book, bibliography, the cultural history of colour, the development of Art History and Bibliography, and conserving works on paper.