Drawing in Silver and Gold
Leonardo to Jasper Johns
Stacey Sell & Hugo Chapman

Editions

From the Middle Ages to the present, master draftsmen have used the technique of metalpoint to create some of the most beautiful and technically accomplished drawings in the history of art. Drawing in Silver and Gold examines the history of this evocative medium, in which a metal stylus is used on a specially prepared surface to create lines of astonishing delicacy.

This beautifully illustrated book examines the practice of metalpoint over six centuries, in the work of artists ranging from Leonardo, Dürer, and Rembrandt to Otto Dix and Jasper Johns. A team of authors—curators, conservators, scientists—address variations in technique across time and between different schools, incorporating new scientific analysis, revealing patterns of use, and providing a rare demonstration of the medium's range and versatility. They reappraise famous metalpoints of the Renaissance and shed new light on infrequently studied periods, such as the seventeenth century and the Victorian silverpoint revival.

A new examination of an exquisite but not thoroughly understood medium, Drawing in Silver and Gold offers fresh interpretations of a practice central to the history of drawing and will serve as the most authoritative reference on metalpoints for years to come.

Exhibition schedule:

  • National Gallery of Art - http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/exhibitions/2015/leonardo-to-jasper-johns.html, May 3–July 26, 2015
  • The British Museum, September 10–December 6, 2015

At the National Gallery of Art, Stacey Sell is associate curator of old master prints and drawings, Kimberly Schenck is head of paper conservation, and John Oliver Hand is curator of northern Renaissance paintings. Bruce Weber is curator of paintings and sculpture at the Museum of the City of New York. At the British Museum, Hugo Chapman is keeper and curator of Italian and French drawings, Giulia Bartrum is assistant keeper of German and Swiss prints and drawings, An Van Camp is assistant keeper of Dutch and Flemish prints and drawings, Joanna Russell is Mellon Fellow and conservation scientist, Judith Rayner is senior paper conservator, and Jenny Bescoby is paper conservator in the department of conservation and scientific research.