The mission of the Rmn-GP is to contribute to the better understanding of the French cultural heritage.
The Réunion des Musées Nationaux was set up in 1895 to purchase art works for the national museums. It has since been entrusted with many other missions: organizing temporary exhibitions, publishing catalogues, and running the Louvre former workshops of plaster cast and copperplate prints among many others.
The Louvre Collection
The Department of Chalcographie was founded in 1797 at the museum of the Louvre. The museum had just been created in the aftermath the French Revolution to be the receptacle of the many art collections of the Kings and Royal Institutions so they could be admired and shared with the citizen of the Nation. The collection of the Chalcographie was composed by a few thousands copper plates acquired since the 17th century for the Crown but also for the Academy of Fine Arts.
It has since continued to be constantly been enriched by the completion of historical collections –either private or public-, and in the past twenty years, a vivid policy of new commissions to contemporary artists. It holds today over 13,500 copper plates.
The Rmn-GP printing workshop
Originally located within the walls of the Louvre museum, the workshop is now based at Saint Denis, at the doors of Paris. Its high qualified team is the guardian of the traditional methods of intaglio printing or “impression en taille-douce”. The craft is passed from generation to generation along with the secret of the ink composition, specific to each engraved copper plate.
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