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Description: This fine original antique wood-cut print of the Spanish artist Bartolomé Esteban Murillo was produced from a reworked 17th century wood-block by Amand Durand in 1870. As a way of clarification this print was printed in 1870 by Durand by means of a wood-block from the original 17th century wood-block. Please see below for further detail.
The Latin inscription on the cartouche at the centre of the ledge explains that the self-portrait was made at the request of Murillo's children: 'Bart (olo) mé Murillo portraying himself to fulfil the wishes and prayers of his children - or sons'. Despite the unlined appearance of the face the painting is probably relatively late in date, of the early 1670s, when Murillo's children would have been of an age to take pride in their father's achievements. The composition is based on a formula that had been developed for portrait engravings used on the frontispiece of books. The sitter is shown in an oval frame and on the ledge below are the instruments of his profession, a palette and brushes on the right and a drawing and pencil on the left.
Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (born late December 1617, died April 3, 1682) was a Spanish Baroque painter. Although he is best known for his religious works, Murillo also produced a considerable number of paintings of contemporary women and children. These lively, realist portraits of flower girls, street urchins, and beggars constitute an extensive and appealing record of the everyday life of his times.
Amand Durand, born in Paris France, 1831, became a master engraver early in his career. He deeply admired the 15th, 16th, and 17th century Old Masters’ engravings and saw how they lost quality and faded from the ravages of time. This realization, combined with in-depth research throughout public and private collections of these masters, inspired Durands dedication to recreate their images and preserve the original quality for future generations. In 1895 Theo Van Gogh, brother and manager of the infamous Vincent Van Gogh stumbled across the works of this artist in one of his travels. He was so impressed that he sought the artist out and spent an evening with him in his home. Afterward he quickly took to pen and paper to write Vincent to express his enthusiasm for his artistic talents and intellect. The Van Gogh brothers were just two of the many that recognized Amand Durand's talents. However, it would take years to unravel a story book mystery that makes his works and talents even more famed today. Amand Durand was a great admirer of Rembrandt. He desired to study the plates and techniques of this genius. Unfortunately at the time there only remained about 100 known plates, which were available to produce fine quality impressions. For 100 years the bulk of Rembrandt's plates were shrouded in mystery. As time moved on some of Rembrandt’s plates began to surface. By this time Rembrandt’s plates were miserably worn and dull. Amand Durand, who by now had made the ranks of a noted engraver, decided to remedy this with his own gifted talents. He researched and intensely studied pieces that were available only in collections. From here on he spent the major part of his life exactly duplicating Rembrandt’s images onto copper plates. These recreations were called Amand Durand’s after Rembrandt. Their unbelievable clarity and exactness were achieved because Amand Durand used as his guide, not the worn and dull plates, but the first and second state etchings of the master’s original works. By this time Durand’s talent were known to experts of the 19th and 20th centuries. In 1855, Conservator of the Cabinet de Estampes, George Duplessis so appreciated the genius of this man that he had his work published in books which belong to the Bibliotheque Nationale in France. Amand-Durand was used as master etcher in an anthology of European engravings, which became so valuable that they were kept under locked scrutiny in most libraries. What we have is a noted master duplicating a master some 200 years later. (Ref: M&B; Tooley)
General Description: Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy & stable Paper color: - White Age of map color: - Colors used: - General color appearance: - Paper size: - 14in x 9 1/2in (350mm x 240mm) Margins: - Min 1/2in (12mm)
Imperfections: Margins: - None Plate area: - NoneVerso: - None