Prints at the Court of Fontainebleau, c. 1542-47 (Forthcoming)
The chateau of Fontainebleau, transformed into a magnificent palace during the reign of François I, was the birthplace of many of the greatest artistic innovations of the French Renaissance. The highly wrought, ornate decoration conceived for the interiors by the Italian artists Rosso Fiorentino and Francesco Primaticcio would have a profound effect on the course of French art. The prints that were produced at the palace in the 1540s became one of the main vehicles for the dissemination of this Fontainebleau style throughout France and beyond. Prints at the Court of Fontainebleau, c. 1542-47, to be published in three volumes in Sound & Vision’s Studies in Prints and Printmaking series, examines the etchings, engravings and woodcuts that were executed at the French court in a spurt of activity that lasted approximately five years. Known collectively as the School of Fontainebleau, these prints are particularly intriguing, not least for their lack of identifying inscriptions, their unusual, often amateurish appearance, and the total absence of documentary evidence on the circumstances of their production.