Partnership with Le musée du Louvre and La Réunion des musées nationaux-Grand Palais (Rmn-GP).
An exhibition curated by Franck Gautherot and Seungduk Kim, titled Printed Matters and featuring works from the Louvre’s Chalcographie (engraving studio), will run from 27 October 2023 to 31 March 2024 at the Consortium Museum. Nearly seventy engravings, both historic and modern, will trace the tradition of reproductive prints. Collectively, they convey a sense of the present in which a new look at heritage merges with culturally-aware creativity.
The prints on show include reproductions after Botticelli, Corot, Dürer, Greuze, Mantegna, Moreau, Raphaël, Rembrandt, Rigaud, Solario, Titian, Watteau; these works by engravers are set against modern prints by Léonard Foujita, Marcel Gromaire, and Jacques Villon, as well as more contemporary ones by Miquel Barcelo, Louise Bourgeois, Balthazar Burckhard, Tony Cragg, Peter Doig, François Morellet, Robert Morris, Giuseppe Penone, Markus Raetz, Arnulf Rainer, Sophie Ristelhueber, Kiki Smith, and Yan Pei-Ming. Also included is the Chalcographie’s most recent addition, La Constellation du Louvre by Jean-Marie Appriou, available as of October 2023.
The Consortium Museum in Dijon has embodied one of the most radical and powerful voices in contemporary cultural programming in France and abroad since 1977. Sensitive to the evolution of various media, the show is an extension of the museum’s constant exploration of media and its concern to compose new histories of art.
The exhibition will adopt the ‘sensitive hanging’ advocated by lovers of traditional art, respecting the same rules of connoisseurship that the Consortium Museum applies to contemporary art.
The Consortium notably hosted The Drawing Centre Show in 2022–2023, in which artists were asked to submit electronic versions of drawings designed to be printed at the museum, which were then hung on the walls as they arrived. Leading figures on the current art scene took part in the show.
The Louvre’s Chalcographie is the product of many histories. It began life as a copper-plate engraving workshop to promote the policies of Louis XIV, who had the great events of his reign engraved and printed for distribution to members of the court and to foreign ambassadors. At the French Revolution the royal workshop was transformed into a national collection of engravings; then, during the nineteenth century, it became a tool of cultural democratization thanks to the production of ‘reproductive’ engravings that disseminated prints of famous works to all levels of society. In the early 1980s the Chalcographie began inviting contemporary artists to design a plate, developed in conjunction with the print shop of the Réunion des musées nationaux–Grand Palais (Rmn-GP) and acquired by the Louvre for its collection. Once designed and executed, the printing and marketing of the work was handled by the Rmn–GP according to a simple principle: the print-run is, by nature, unlimited, thereby perpetuating the original spirit.
This approach, founded upon the skills of master artisans at the Rmn–GP and upon the talent of printmakers, is simultaneously anachronistic and contemporary. Traditional yet open to creativity, it reflects a current trend within the contemporary and avant-garde art scenes for editions in multiple formats, making partially de-materialized artworks more accessible to a wider public, thereby extending the scope of art appreciation.
— Press release (Musée du Louvre)