Pourtraicture ingenieuse de plusieurs facons de Masques

Print
1555 (published)
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Prints & Drawings Study Room, room 503
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This print, from a set of 18, shows a mask composed of forms of sea creature. It is in the 'grotesque' style derived from ancient Roman prototypes, which took inspiration from fish and animal forms or from vegetation.

Frans Huys based his prints on original designs by Cornelis Floris (1514-1575), who is credited with inventing a Flemish version of the grotesque style in about 1541. Floris was a sculptor who studied in Rome in about 1538, where the Emperor Nero’s palace, called the Domus Aurea (Golden Palace), had recently been rediscovered below ground level.

This plate comes from a set published in 1555 by Hans Liefrinck (about 1518-1573), an important Antwerp publisher and print-seller.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Engraving on paper
Brief Description
Frans Huys after Cornelis Floris. Plate from a suite of 18 designs for masks entitled 'Pourtraicture ingenieuse de plusieurs facons de Masques'. Flemish, 1555.
Physical Description
Title page for Pourtraicture ingenieuse de plusieurs facons de Masques, in a strapwork design
Dimensions
  • Cut to height: 16.4cm
  • Cut to width: 14.1cm
Marks and Inscriptions
  • Lettered in the centre of the plate within a cartouche: 'Pourtraicture ingenieuse de plusieurs / facons de Masques .... / voirriers, & Taillieurs dimages' (engraver's monogram)
  • Signed in the lower centre of the cartouche: 'Hans Liefrinck'
  • Signed with the monogram 'F H' in the lower centre of the plate.
Object history
In the dripping fishy style originally developed for grotto decoration in the 1500s, which later came to be known as auricular. From a set of at least 18.



[The following taken from old card catalogue]

Guilmard records 20 plates. Hedicke suggests that they are from original drawings by Cornelis Floris, an attribution which is accepted by Hollstein and mentioned by Berlin. However there exists a set of reversed copies bearing the monogram of the master called Jesus Christ and also signed 'Renatus B.L. Fecit' and dated 1560, eg E.57-1896. A similar set of reversed copies exists without the lined background, E.301-8-1928. The set was copied in the 18th century. Two impressions printed in sepia from this set are in the V&A, E.943-4-1886. The designs were freely used by Aloisio Giovannoli (c. 1550-1618) in the composition of his book of masks. Five impressions of these are in the V&A, E.1237-1241-1923. It is these to which Destailleur mistakenly refers as the original of Huys' designs and as by Angelo Veientano. There is a second state with the name of a second publisher added, 'Iac. Honoruogt excudit'. This state is reproduced by Hedicke.
Subject depicted
Summary
This print, from a set of 18, shows a mask composed of forms of sea creature. It is in the 'grotesque' style derived from ancient Roman prototypes, which took inspiration from fish and animal forms or from vegetation.



Frans Huys based his prints on original designs by Cornelis Floris (1514-1575), who is credited with inventing a Flemish version of the grotesque style in about 1541. Floris was a sculptor who studied in Rome in about 1538, where the Emperor Nero’s palace, called the Domus Aurea (Golden Palace), had recently been rediscovered below ground level.



This plate comes from a set published in 1555 by Hans Liefrinck (about 1518-1573), an important Antwerp publisher and print-seller.
Bibliographic References
  • Guilmard, D. Les Maitres Ornemanistes. Paris, 1880-81, p. 478 no. 8 under Liefrinck
  • Illustrierter Katalog der Ornamentstichsammlung des K.K. Osterr. Museums fur Kunst und Industrie, Wien. Vienna, 1889
  • Berard. [Sale catalogue]. Paris, Feb. 1891
  • Destailleur. [Sale catalogue]. Paris, May 1895
  • Hedicke, R. Cornelis Floris und die Florisdekoration. Berlin, 1913.
  • Collijn, I. Katalog der Ornamentstichsammlung des Magnus Gabriel de la Gardie. Stockholm, 1933
  • Delen. Histoire de la Gravure dans les Anciens Pays-Bas et dans les Provinces Belges des origines jusqu'a la Fin du XVIIIe Siecle, II. 1935
  • Berlin Staatliche Museen: Katalog der Ornamentstichsammlung. Berlin and Leipzig, 1936-9, no. 214
  • Hollstein, F.W.H. Dutch and Flemish Engravings, Etchings and Woodcuts c.1450-1700. Amsterdam, 1949 ff.
  • Pourtraicture ingenieuse de plusieurs facons de Masques, fort untile aulx painctres, orfevres, taillieurs de pierres, voirriers, & tailleurs dimages. Antwerp, Hans Liefrinck, 1555.
Collection
Accession Number
14475:1

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record createdJune 30, 2009
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