At the end of the 15th century, the printing press revolutionised the spread of information in Europe. News and trends could travel faster. With broader distribution, there was an increase in knowledge about skilled artists who achieved wide-spread celebrity status. The new techniques also enabled the depiction of new subjects that were seldom seen in painting and a broader public was supplied with playing cards, genre scenes and exotic animals.

The exhibition features iconic works by grand printmakers such as Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528), Lucas van Leyden (1494–1533), and Marcantonio Raimondi (1475–1534), alongside masters who are less well-known. Some of the highlights are The Birth of Christ, made around 1450 by Master ES (active ca 1450–1467), which is considered one of the earliest prints in the history of Europe, and Battista Franco’s (ca 1510–1561) Saint Jerome, one of the largest prints in terms of size of the 16th century.

The exhibition features around 100 works from the comprehensive collection of artworks on paper at the Gothenburg Museum of Art. The Museum seldom shows art on paper due to the works’ sensitivity to light, and space concerns. Now, the art public has an opportunity to see a broad selection of these hidden gems.

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