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Printmaking Processes: Intaglio

By Joachim Koch. Mar 25, 2010. 1:00 AM.

Topics: Book Making, Learn About Books

Intaglio is a family of printmaking techniques in which the image is incised into a surface, known as the matrix or plate.

Normally, copper or zinc plates are used as a surface, and the incisions are created by etching, engraving, drypoint, aquatint or mezzotint. Collographs may also be printed as intaglio plates.

To print an intaglio plate, ink is applied to the surface and then rubbed with tarlatan cloth to remove most of the excess. The final smooth wipe is often done with newspaper or old public phone book pages, leaving ink only in the incisions. A damp piece of paper is placed on top and the plate and paper are run through a printing press that, through pressure, transfers the ink from the recesses of the plate to the paper.


Joachim Koch
Book buyer. Bookseller. Factotum Generalis. Believes in not attempting to be the smartest person in room and enjoys growing success.

 

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