The Creation of Adam, 1642 - Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione 
Size: 24x36 inches
Substrate: Premium Matte, thick
Product Notes: Considered one of the most original and innovative Italian artists of the Baroque period, Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione literally separated light from darkness, creating form out of chaos in this work, his earliest known monotype. In a perfect match of medium and message, Castiglione, the Genoese artist credited with inventing the technique, used this new method to portray the central act of Genesis: the creation of man. He produced this electrifying image by subtracting the design from the inked surface of a copperplate with a blunt instrument, such as a stick or paintbrush handle, and then printing directly on a sheet of paper. Broad, angular strokes of white depict God emerging from a cloud, while thin, fluid lines extract the languid body of Adam from velvety blackness. Castiglione’s monotypes employ both this dark-ground technique, which naturally lends itself to dramatic and mysterious imagery, and the light-ground manner, in which the design is drawn in ink directly on a clean plate. Both processes yield only one fine impression. It was not until the nineteenth century that such versatile artists as Edgar Degas explored the monotype’s full potential.
Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione
The Creation of Adam
Monotype in black ink on ivory laid paper
303 × 203 mm
Credit Line
Gift of an anonymous donor; restricted gifts of Dr. William D. and Sara R. Shorey, and Mr. and Mrs. George B. Young
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24x36" Poster: The Creation of Adam, 1642 - Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione