Mark Catesby Flamingo 48. Plate 48 of the Dr. Seligmann edition published in Amsterdam 1771-1776. A beautiful antique: hand colored copper plate engraving on hand made rag paper.
Flamingo by Mark Catesby. Fantastic Illustration of Fan Coral and Head of a Flamingo. Hand colored engraving on rag published mid 1700’s by Dr. Seligmann.
This famous work is on North American species of birds and foliage. Too poor to have a separate illustration for the bird from the foliage, is now classic. Catesby was in the Carolinas, Virginia, Florida and the Bahamas in the 1730’s. The Seligmann Edition was published from 1771-1776 in Amsterdam. Stunning water colored copper plate engravings on rag. Each old print measures about 10 1/4 x 17″ though there are a few that are 9 1/2 x 15 1/2″
A laborious craft of all those involved in producing something like these LOVE*LY Mark Catesby Bird Engravings. First Catesby had to travel, find and identify the species. Second the illustrations had to be meticulously drawn, with the best accuracy. LATER The image would be transferred onto a copper plate and engraved with burins. The paper was hard to acquire, and the engraver would have to re engrave another plate after just 300 strikes. The water colorists would die at young ages, due to licking tips of their paint brushes. Yet these old prints still exist in super fine condition and exemplary condition. That is mostly due to the quality of the rag paper. Paper was made of rag right up through the turn of the 20th Century. Coming from linen, flax, NOT TREES. There was no acid in the paper those days.
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