The Printing Revolution

Since 1969 the Scuola Internazionsle di Grafica has introduced generations of Italian and international students to the art of printing and typography through a series of educational workshops for schools, academies and universities.

The printing press has played a fundamental role in the history of Venice and the European Renaissance. Our demonstrations and hands-on workshops offer the unique opportunity to work in the Scuola’s equiped print-workshop, where innovative and eco-friendly methods are practiced with traditional etching and typographic presses.

The Scuola’s laboratories and classrooms are weelchair accessible. Due to COVID-19 emergency, the Scuola requires its students to respect social distancing.

Educational Workshops

The Educational Workshops embrace two themes: Printmaking and Typography. The groups of students may take part in one or more classes. The curriculum includes two demonstrations of 1 hour each and two hands-on workshops of 3 hours.

2 Printmaking Workshops
From de’ Barbari to Canaletto: the history of Venice narrated by its great engravers
  • 60 minutes demonstration
  • 3-hour hands-on workshop
2 Typography Workshops
From Gutenberg to Aldo Manuzio: printing with movable type
  • 60 minutes demonstration
  • 3-hour hands-on workshop

60 minutes printmaking demonstration

From de’ Barbari to Canaletto: the history of Venice narrated by its great engravers

No. of participants: minimum 15 maximum 25 / Recommended for schools, colleges and universities / Cost per student: €6.50

An evocative journey between prints and traditional engraving techniques. Surrounded by the presses and the papers of the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica’s print-shop, the participants will be introduced to the lives of three engravers who are symbols of Venetian printmaking history. The students will be shown in detail the reproduction of the famous Jacopo de’ Barbari’s Bird’s Eye View of Venice, as well as examples of the tools used by Sister Isabella Piccini for her engravings. In addition, a copper matrix will be engraved. The matrix will be the same used by Giovanni Antonio Canal, known as Canaletto. The copper plate will be printed with classical inking as well as with the technique known as “à la poupée”. With the aim of connecting ancient to contemporary methods, the inks used during the demonstration will be of the latest generation and eco-sustainable.

3-hour hands-on printmaking workshop

From de’ Barbari to Canaletto: the history of Venice narrated by its great engravers

No. of participants: minimum 8 maximum 16 / High Schools and Universities / Cost per student (materials included): €19.50

This workshop will be preceded by an introduction on the Venetian printing press and its role in the history of the Serenissima Republic. After the introduction, the students will try their hand at monotype, a printing technique without acid and therefore particularly suitable for safe and sustainable workshops.

All the matrices in glass substitute or perspex (a soft and flexible plastic material) will be painted with coloured inks and printed and eventually assembled in the form of a single copy accordion book.

60 minutes typography demonstration

From Gutenberg to Aldo Manuzio: printing with movable type

No. of participants: minimum 15 maximum 25 / Recommended for schools, colleges and universities / Cost per student: €6.50

The Gutenberg 42-line Bible in Gothic characters – completed on 23 February 1455- is known as the starting point of the history of the printed book. It is no coincidence that a few years later, the first official printers in the Venetian Lagoon were also German. Giovanni and Vindelino of Speyer (da Spira) to whom from September 18, 1469, the ‘Serenissima’ Venetian Republic granted a monopoly on printing with movable type.

They had contol over the book market until the advent of Aldo Manuzio and his publishing revolution. Inspired by these historical figures, the participants will assist in the entire process of printing with movable type on an original Vandercook press.

3-hour hands-on Typography Workshop

From Gutenberg to Aldo Manuzio: printing with movable type

No. of participants: minimum 8 maximum 16 / High Schools and Universities / Cost per student (materials included): €19.50


Movable type provides the ingredients for a puzzle of ideas. After an introduction dedicated to the History of Typography and its Masters, your students will be introduced to the typographic frame. Guided by our staff, they will become the composers of a line of font, that they have designed for the draft of a page. Once the type is embedded in the frame, the students will move on to inking and printing on paper. Each student will receive a page printed with the names of all the workshop participants.

Request availability

PRINTMAKING
From de’ Barbari to Canaletto: the history of Venice narrated by its great engravers
60 minutes demonstration3-hour hands-on workshop

TYPOGRAPHY
From Gutenberg to Aldo Manuzio: printing with movable type
60 minutes demonstration3-hour hands-on workshop


Please indicate the preferred time slot
10.30am – 1.30pm2.30pm – 5.30pm

Tuition language
EnglishSpanishItalian




The Scuola’s Print-Shop

Our spacious and luminous laboratories are equipped for all printing processes.

 

The chalcographic and typographic presses are operated manually with the same methods used throughout the history of printmaking, from the revolution of paper and the printing press. Through demonstrations and practical exercises, participants will thus be able to appreciate and better understand the influence of printing on the major events in European history.

 

The Scuola’s print-workshop is managed by our qualified staff, assisted by Art & Design students who participate as interns in the ERASMUS project, an exchange program sponsored by the European Union. We use sustainable, non-toxic materials and inks.

 

Classes are instructed in English, Spanish or Italian. The Scuola’s laboratories and classrooms are weelchair accessible. Due to COVID-19 emergency, the Scuola requires its students to respect social distancing.

Art Professors & the Scuola

Jeff Abshear
Director, Kalamazoo Book Arts Center
Adjunct Professor, Western Michigan University

I began working with the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica in Venice in 2012, and over the past eight years have accompanied over 100 students to work in the studio. The Scuola is a perfect oasis for printing in the heart of bustling Venice. Students can explore the intricate maze of streets, learning about the history of Venetian art and architecture, then retreat to the quiet studio to create printed images inspired by what they see and do. The Scuola’s workshops are tailored to accommodate different groups and itineraries, and add richness to what would otherwise be a simple tourist visit. They are a great way to experience this unique city and learn about its history as an important center for printing and book production.

Rachel Singel
Assistant Professor, Hite Art Institute, Department of Fine Art
University of Luisville – KY

In summer 2016 and 2017 I had the opportunity bring students from the University of Louisville to study at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica. In addition to working on their assignments, with the help of Printshop Manager Roberta Feoli De Lucia, students collaboratively printed a limited edition book. By experiencing Venice through a local print-workshop, my students were able to gain invaluable insight into Venetian culture and further their global perspective. I could not recommend the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica highly enough as a place to teach and learn!

Timothy McDowell
Professor of Studio Art
Connecticut College

There are few studios that offer location, facility and history as impressive as the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica. Venice has seen the rise of so many artists, from the Bellinis, Giorgione, Titian, Montegna, Tiepolo, Tintoretto and Canaletto and many others, yet it has established itself as a venue of great importance as host to the art worlds most well known venue of contemporary thought and controversy, The Biennale. Any other city would have been satisfied to rest on its history but not Venice and specifically not the native families that have retained their roles there as patrons and practitioners. Thankfully, two such residents have, since its conception in the 1960’s, provided artists and students a residency that is truly remarkable.

I have had the good fortune of meeting and working with Matilde Dolcetti and Lorenzo de Castro when I brought a dozen students to the Scuola for four months. The opportunity was life changing for my students and my family who joined me. It was incredibly wonderful. Living and working somewhere for that duration of time, one would think that faults would begin to surface, problems would arise, maybe even regrets, but it wasn’t so. The warmth and hospitality and effort was overwhelming and every effort was put towards fulfilling what was promised. The studios at that time were well equipped and maintained and are now even better.

The location of the studios allows one to become acquainted to the authentic residents of Venice. The Scuola’s reputation and rapport with the neighborhood near San Marcuola presents an opportunity few visitors to Venice ever get to experience. There is a sincere recognition that is extended to those attending the Scuola that is most welcome. I anticipate a return to the Scuola with more students in the coming years and look forward to renewing memories and taking advantage of the Scuola’s excellent studios.

Melanie Mowinski
Associate Professor, Visual Arts
Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
I began working the Scuola as one of the guests artists in 2016. I was impressed with the diversity of equipment and offerings, as well as the location of this workshop. It’s easy to access from the vaporetto or by foot. But more importantly, it’s a fabulous place to learn and create. When I first arrived, I was introduced to the the Scuola’s artist book collection filled with traditional, inventive, and experimental book objects. This and the impressive list of artists who have visited made me think that one day I would need to bring my own students to work here.
I finally was able to do this is 2019. I led a trip to the Venice Biennale for college students at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts where I am a Professor of Art. As part of the trip, we spent a morning at the Scuola processing our experiences through a simple drypoint workshop. Everyone at the Scuola was accommodating, helpful, and committed to making our experience the best it could be. I can’t wait to come back!

Getting to the Scuola

We are in Venice in the ‘Sestiere di Cannaregio’, a few steps from Strada Nova and the railway station of Venice Santa Lucia.

The nearest vaporetto stop, San Marcuola – Casino, is served by lines 1 and 2. The Scuola is a three minute walk from the stop.

The facilities of the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica are wheelchair accessible. Due to COVID-19 emergency, the Scuola requires its students to respect social distancing.

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