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NATURE PRINTING

Nature Printed Engravings by  Constantin von Ettinghausen (1826 - 1897)   +   Alois Pokorny (1826-1886).

from the artists' book Physiotypia plantarum austriacarum.  Vienna. print. 1855 - 1873. 

 

professor at the university in Vienna who worked with Ettinghausen on improving the process.  The Imperial Printing Office (Hof- und Staatsdruckerei) improved upon the nature printing process used by Henry Bradbury in his The Ferns of Great Britain and Ireland with greater detail in the venation of the leaves, hairs, and other minutiae.

 

Print: 22 1/2 x 15" Plate 17" x 12 3/4"

 

plates, considered to be "the most important work produced by nature printing ever published" (Stafleu). Ettingshausen was an Austrian botanist who published a number of works using the nature printing process which was invented by Alois Auer.  This work is perhaps his most famous production. The  plates were printed under his supervision at the Vienna state press. Pokorny was a

Constantin Freiherr von Ettingshausen (1826-1897) and Alois Pokorny (1826-1886)Ettingshausen's Nature Printing Physiotypia Plantarum Austriacarum.  Der Naturselbstdruck in Seiner Anwendung auf Die Gefässpflanzen Österreichs in Naturselbstdruck, mit Besonderer Berüscksichtigung der Nervation in den Flächenorganen der Pflazen.  Vienna, 1855-1873.  Two folio volumes with 30 plates and a ten volume atlas with 1000

Nature prints of plants were produced by drying the actual plants, pressing them between a plate of soft lead and one of steel, making an impression on the lead plate, and making an electrotype from the lead plate.  Electrotypes were made by putting the plate into a solution of copper and passing electricity through it, causing the copper to be deposited on its surface.  After a few weeks, the copper would become rigid and could be lifted from the lead plate, complete with the image, which could be inked and used for printing.