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The History of Printmaking: Ben Franklin at Versailles

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Warrington Colescott, The History of Printmaking: Ben Franklin at Versailles, 1976, soft-ground etching and aquatint, with vibrograver, and relief rolls through stencils, printed in color on cream Arches Cover paper, Museum Purchase: Caroline Ladd Pratt Fund, © Warrington Colescott, 80.47.1c

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Details
Title

The History of Printmaking: Ben Franklin at Versailles

Related Titles

series (original language): The History of Printmaking

Artist

Warrington Colescott (American, born 1921)

Date

1976

Medium

soft-ground etching and aquatint, with vibrograver, and relief rolls through stencils, printed in color on cream Arches Cover paper

Edition

37/50

Catalogue Raisonné

Chapin 213

Dimensions (H x W x D)

plate: 21 13/16 in x 27 5/8 in; sheet: 24 7/8 in x 33 in

Inscriptions & Markings

watermark: Arches NCE, watermark, lower right

signature; date: Warrington Colescott 1976, graphite, lower right

title: History of Printmaking: Ben Franklin at Versailles, graphite, lower center

edition: 37/50, graphite, lower left

Collection Area

Graphic Arts

Category

Prints

Object Type

intaglio print

Culture

American

Credit Line

Museum Purchase: Caroline Ladd Pratt Fund

Accession Number

80.47.1c

Copyright

© Warrington Colescott

Terms

etching

intaglio printing

intaglio prints

paper

studios

Description

Although better known as a statesman, Benjamin Franklin was also a skillful printer and engraver. Colescott tips his hat to Franklin's "diplomatic and amatory successes" at the court of Louis XVI at Versailles, where he served as the ambassador. Colescott imagines the politician wooing the beauties of the court with his press, while the detritus of his daily life (boxer shorts, stray socks) and his printing equipment clutter the foreground.

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