intaglio

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Greek Hellenistic Large Gold Ring with Nike and Quadriga, 3rd-2nd Century BC

A broad D-section gold hoop extending to a large elliptical plaque with flared edge, rectangular stepped plaque with inset stone panel, intaglio design of winged Nike (Victory) in her chariot bending forward to goad her four draught horses.

The motif of Nike in her four-horse chariot appears on Greek finger rings from at least the 5th century BC. The style of this ring is very similar to one that is now in the Getty Museum, Malibu, and which came from Alexandria. It is believed that the ring, which forms part of a collection of gold jewelry, belonged to a member of the royal court, possibly Queen Arsinoe, so in all likelihood this ring also belonged to a very wealthy and influential individual. The image of a quadriga in the Classical Greek and Hellenistic periods is mostly associated with the gods who were believed to drive their chariots across the heavens and being pulled by various animals that were sacred to them.

Roman Intaglio of an Anguiped Giant, 1st Century BC/AD

In Greek mythology, the Giants (or Gigantes) were a race of great strength and aggression, though not necessarily of great size, known for the Gigantomachy, their battle with the Olympian gods. According to Hesiod, the Giants were the offspring of Gaia (Earth), born from the blood that fell when Uranus (Sky) was castrated by their Titan son Cronus.

Archaic and Classical representations show Giants as man-sized hoplites (heavily-armed ancient Greek foot soldiers) fully human in form. Later representations (after c. 380 BC) show Giants as anguipedes, having snakes for legs. In later traditions, the Giants were often confused with other opponents of the Olympians, particularly the Titans, an earlier generation of large and powerful children of Gaia and Uranus.

The vanquished Giants were said to be buried under volcanoes, and to be the cause of volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

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I bought a stack of real cheap floor tiles at Restore last winter, and I’m just getting around to testing them for intaglio printing down at the Iowa City Press Co-op. It’s a hard tile but still easy enough to scratch into with my tools. I wasn’t sure how thin of a line I’d be able to get away with, but it appears to be pretty good at reproducing whatever you scratch into it. especially on this bamboo paper. The one drawback is that the tile itself is so dark, it’s difficult to tell how much wiping you have to do to bring the plate tone down to level you want. More trial and error on that one.

The David Bowie/Egon Schiele comic is carved linoleum., also on bamboo paper. The lines on these blocks are very deep grooves, deeper than they need to be for intaglio, but I was initially carving them for relief printing. Might do a combination relief and intaglio if I ever finish the rest of the blocks.

And the bottom one is more ballpoint pen on styrofoam relief printing , using acrylic paint on copier paper.