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The South Transept, Rheims Cathedral

The South Transept, Rheims Cathedral

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TitleThe South Transept, Rheims Cathedral
ArtistBrewer, J.A. (British)
Colored etching
Dimensions24" x 14"

Catalog NumberUC2
LocationB.D. Owens Library


Senior class gift 1920. Very little is known about the artist responsible for this work which was copyrighted in 1919 in both the United Kingdom and the United States; all indications are that he was British. Reims Cathedral, often considered the most classic of the French Gothic cathedrals, had its roof, much of its stained glass and sculpture destroyed in an artillery bombardment in World War I. This and the fact that it was the coronation church of the kings of France, made it a favorite subject for artists of the early 20th century.

An etching is produced by drawing with a sharp needle-like tool an acid-resistant coating of a metal plate. The plate then is etched using an acid but this only will affect the areas of the plate having been "scratched" by the tool. The actual print is made by inking the plate, after the acid-resistant coating has been removed following the etching, and wiping the surface so that the ink remains only in the etched lines. Although colors made be printed, very often when the color is sparingly used it indicates that it was added by hand-coloring each print.