Ugo Gattoni - Sybille's bath • Etching • Edition

Ugo Gattoni presents his first drypoint etching, made in the Urdla print facility in Villeurbanne (France). Edited by Sold Art online art gallery, this dreamlike composition featuring some references to his girlfriend Sybille’s anatomy, as well as Escher’s perspective work.


After two days at URDLA, Ugo went back to his studio in Paris to continue this etching. The etching step lasted a total of seven days. When finished, he returned to the print shop so that Vincent prepared the plate for printing. Some varnish touch-ups helped him protect the areas he had scratched by mistake. The bite step could now be initiated; the plate was soaked in an acid bath (ferric chloride) to enhance the areas without varnish. The longer the plate is washed, the longer the acid enhances the width and the depth of the line. After checking this operation with a microscope, Vincent removed the varnish with a solvent. The plate was now ready to receive ink.

Vincent dipped the paper into a clean water bath for better absorption of the ink on the press. He prepared his ink on a heated support to make it more fluid, and then filled the plate in ink by hand to make it penetrate into all the grooves. Using a tarlatan, he removed the excess of ink to keep it only in the hollow parts. The plate was placed on the pins of the press plate. The wet paper was gently deposited on top, using small pliers. The press was turned on. When the sheet was removed, the etching and the contour of the plate appeared.

Ugo checked the first print, which allowed the copperplate printer to change the intensity of the dark colour. The print order was signed by the artist to validate the printing process. Vincent could then proceed with the printing of the 30 copies based on that one. Each etching was placed vertically for several days for drying, and then flat one on top of each other to avoid any undulation. The artist signed and numbered each work and each certificate of authenticity.


Sybille’s bath is available here.