The texts in Part I allow the reader to gain an overview of such broader historical changes as played out in the wider field of prints and printmaking. All three texts approach their subject from the perspective of media history and ‘print culture’, rather than of connoisseurial art history. This is not to deny the relevance of aesthetics. The term ‘print culture’ here serves to highlight print’s function as a mode of communication rather than aesthetics alone.
If the anthology as a whole represents vital aspects of the general discourse on print, Part II offers texts that act as markers for some of the specific debates in the field of artistic printmaking over the last thirty years. They are written by artists who are also educators (Weisberg, Reeves, Bednarczyk, Harding, Balfour), as well as by a curator of contemporary art (Roca) and by an art historian/curator (Field).
As the title suggests, the texts in Part III put the spotlight on recurring key terms that function as points in the discursive network about prints and printmaking, chief among them: reproduction, seriality, aura, the edition, the multiple, the matrix, the imprint.
The texts in Part IV, as the title suggests, aim to circumscribe some of the major spheres of print activity. They are focused on the keywords of production, collecting, dissemination, education and research.
A museum perspective on digital fine art printmaking
The text by Gillian Saunders, curator of prints and drawings at the Victoria & Albert Museum (or ‘V&A’) in London, gives insights into the broader parameters of museum collecting rather than private collecting. It uncovers the wider cultural and artistic ideologies – including the nature of the institution itself – that become apparent in the designation of objects worthy of collection by a national institution at a certain point in time.
Storytelling and organizing creativity in luxury and fashion
Pierre-Yves Donzé and Ben Wubs
During the 1980s, the European luxury and fashion business experienced a period of radical change. The French holding company Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH), the world's largest fashion and luxury group, is an excellent embodiment of this organizational change. This chapter is a case study of LVMH exploring the evolution of the fashion and luxury industries, entrepreneurship and innovation, and the management of creativity. The LVMH example is especially important because it links Paris to global markets for luxury goods, the largest of which is China. The chapter assesses the narratives generated by the company and by the mass media about craft heritage and the 'genius' of fashion creators. Acknowledging that creativity is a major resource for LVMH, it considers the ways in which the creative process is socially constructed through storytelling. Moreover, the chapter addresses the question of how and where the LVMH group organizes the innovation process.
Amanda Thomson demonstrates the appropriateness and feasibility of a multi-modal, multi-disciplinary approach to research about conceptions of place and landscape in which print, especially book art, plays a significant role. Its aim – and contribution to knowledge – is to consider how art can augment and maybe even alter the insights of other disciplines, in this case, geography and anthropology.
The introduction, by the three founders – Amze Emmons, R. L. Tillman and Jason Urban – of the now sadly defunct web resource Printeresting, to their (edited) manual is at once playful as well as serious. Fittingly, it adopts the format of a manual itself, yet constitutes a deconstruction of this prevalent written source category on printmaking.
This text is the initial section, musically titled ‘Ouverture’, of the eminent French art historian Georges Didi-Huberman’s book, which is dedicated to the cast or cast object and other forms of imprints or impressions (French: empreinte) in art. The text originally appeared in the catalogue for Didi-Huberman’s exhibition of the same title in 1997. An unaltered reprint appeared in 2008 (Editions Minuit, Paris) and this is its first English translation.