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Conceptualizing the copy – Abraham Bosse's Sentimens sur la distinction des diverses manières de peinture, desin et gravure et des originaux d'avec leurs copies

Sammern, Romana

In: Osano, ShigetoshI (Hrsg.): Between east and west : Reproductions in art; Proceedings of the 2013 CIHA colloquium in Naruto, Japan, 15th-18th January 2013. Cracow 2014, pp. 95-107

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Translation of abstract (German)

The paper explores the meaning and making of the terms "original" and "copy" in 17th-century European art-writing and practice. Starting from the French art theorist, printmaker, and teacher Abraham Bosse, his oeuvre of prints and a close reading of his treatise on connoisseurship of 1649, "Sentiments sur la distinction des diverses manières de peinture, desin et gravure et des originaux d'avec leurs copies", it discusses the emergence of this dualism. Bosse's book is one of the first primary texts on art criticism and connoisseurship in European art-writing. Although it used the terms "original", "copy" and "forgery" to give non-artists advice on how to tell the difference between the three, it did not identify the difference between originals and copies. The treatise is written in reference to printmaking and therefore raises the question about his intended meaning of "original" and its "original copies". Was he referring to an original object and its replicas, or to the more theoretical concepts of imitation and invention? The essay examines the referential system of the meaning of "original" and the status of the artifacts in Bosse's writing and printmaking.

Document type: Book Section
Version: Secondary publication
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2015 12:56
DDC-classification: Arts
Graphics arts, prints
Controlled Subjects: Bosse, Abraham
Subject (classification): Artists, Architects
Drawing, Printmaking
Countries/Regions: France