Teresa Estapé
Teresa Estapé XXX

Maniera nera


Maniera nera (Mezzotint), 2014. Dry-point prints on copper. Fine Arts College, University of Barcelona.

A series of prints that proposes a reflection on the concepts of mastery, effort, value and work.

The invention of mezzotint or maniera nera in the seventeenth century greatly enhanced the range of greys in dry-point etchings that no longer started from a flat plate but from one that was completely bitten. This preparatory grounding of the plate, a long monotonous task in which thousands of dots are marked on the surface, was carried out by apprentices and assistants. The prepared plate was finally handed over to the master, who would trace the drawing on it.

The invisible task of preparing the plate comes to light in these prints. Instead of using the final plate to produce a work, the process itself becomes the work, thus confirming the progression of this monotonous, neglected procedure.