Untitled Baldus, Edouard  (French, 1813-1889)

The third of Baldus’s commercial photogravure publications reproducing original engravings, the purpose of of which were to provide artists and architects with the finest models for their designs and scholars with material for their researches.

I here present artists and amateurs the result of long and and patient research, which has led me to the making of identical reproductions of old engravings using my photographic process. This process fixes the object immediately onto copper and carves it; it thus permits the multiplication of prints which are entirely similar to the original engravings. I call this result, or which I am the inventor, héliogravure.

Interest in du Cerceau, a prolific sixteenth-century architect and engraver, had been relatively steady since his own time. Nevertheless, his popularity in France had lately been surging, the great building projects of the Second Empire demanded great programmes of interior and exterior ornamentation, and with revival styles now in vogue, particularly the unabashed opulence of the era of Louis XIV, mid-century architects, artists, and decorators were plumbing the motifs of pre-Revolutionary France.
Oeuvre de Jacques Androuet dit du Cerceau, a formidable catalogue of the artist’s designs, was Baldus’s contribution to knowledge of the artist and he was counting on a ready audience for its pragmatic programme, [1]


[1] Addleman-Frankel, Kate, Saskia Asser, and Édouard Baldus. After Photography?: The Photogravures of Édouard Baldus Reconsidered. , 2018. p. 24

Daniel, Malcolm. The Photographs of Edouard Baldus. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1995.