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Technical Notions

From drawings to prints: origin and diffusion.

An image engraved or drawn onto teh matrix and then transferred onto paper is called a print. Ever since they first appeared, prints spread far and quickly, thanks also to the low cost involved and the ease with which they could be transported.

In order to gain a better understanding, we need to map out a breef history of the print in Italy, along with the main players that have been involved.

Reams have been written on the subject. We need look no further than the important role that Francesco Milizia attributed it in 1797: "With the multiplication of prints, the products of the Fine Arts of drawing can be seen easily and everywhere;[...] Prints speak to the eyes."

With the definition he aimed to underscore how prints could render visible all that had been inaccesible up until then, because it had been carried off somewhere far away, or locked in a cabinet, for example. In this way, the art student, painter or even just a collector with a well-ordered collection could acquaint himself with the style of each master.