Janet’s Trip to Italy!

Janet has just come back from her trip to Italy, her first visit to this beautiful country filled with the masters of art and architecture. While on this trip Janet had hoped to meet the internationally famous (but local to Venice) artist Ugo Baracco. Over the years, Frantic Framers customers have brought in Baracco’s limited edition aquatint engravings and prints to be framed. As luck would have it, Ugo Baracco had just set up a display stand in front of Giardinetti Reali St. Marco’s Square for the tourist season and was exhibiting and selling his amazing work. Janet was ecstatic, and immediately made a bee-line for the display. Fortunately, Mr. Baracco speaks fluent English as he visits the US quite often. Needless to say, Mr. Baracco and Janet really hit it off. He was thrilled to know that Jan’s frame shop was not only familiar with his work, but had framed many of his pieces over the years.

Info on the artist – Ugo Baracco:

Ugo Baracco was born in Padova in 1949, into a family deeply rooted in the arts. In the early 70’s Baracco moved to Venice to attend the Academia delle Belle Arti. During his time as a student Baracco began painting landscapes and portraits, after while he began experimenting with etching, aquatint, aqua fortis and mezzotint, meanwhile perfecting his own printmaking technique.

Fascinated with the beauty of his surroundings he began studying the work of great Venetian artists such as Canaletto, Guardi and Piranesi, who were also moved by the city. Their traditional influence and masterful techniques are visible in his work, along with a great sensitivity to the Venetian landscape.

Baracco’s development as an artist not only stems from his studies, but also his exchanges with artists he met during his numerous travels to other countries. He has earned international recognition as a master printmaker exhibiting all over Europe, Canada, Asia, Australia, Russia, and throughout the United States.He has received many prestigious awards and his work is included in the permanent collection of the Italian Embassy to the United Nations in New York, along with many public and private collections.

Ugo Baracco is represented by the following galleries: Gallery 71 (www.gallery71.com), Montpellier Gallery (www.montpelliergallery.com), and Arka Gallery (www.arka-gallery.com) to name a few.

What’s an aquatint?

Aquatint is an intaglio printmaking technique, a variant of etching.

Aquatinting is an original antique process. This method, entirely executed by hand, involves covering a zinc or copper plate with a wax-based substance. The design is etched into the wax with a sharp pointed tool exposing the metal. The plate is then put into an acid bath which corrodes the exposed areas. The degree of intensity is achieved by the amount of time the plate is exposed to the acid. The final etching is then printed on paper.

Like etching, aquatint uses the application of acid to make the marks in the metal plate. Where the engraving technique uses a needle to make lines that print in black (or whatever color ink is used), aquatint uses powdered rosin (an acid resistant in the ground to create a tonal effect). The tonal variation is controlled by the level of acid exposure over large areas, and thus the image is shaped by large sections at a time. Another tonal technique, mezzotint, begins with a plate surface that is evenly indented so that it will carry a fairly dark tone of ink, then smoothing areas to make them carry less ink and thus print a lighter shade; or, beginning with a smooth plate, areas are roughened to make them darker; or, these two techniques may be combined.

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aquatint


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