Printing Fabric

Posted in resources by Editor on January 7, 2010

Today’s “site of interest” at Style Court is The Zucchi Collection, “home to 56,000 printing blocks used to produce handprinted fabric over the course of three centuries from 1785 to 1935. . . ” As outlined on the Zucchi site itself:

This series reproduces the so-called “Palma” motif which modern historians have determined as being typical of damask fabrics (click on image for more information)

A symmetrical handblock from a monochromatic pair in wood and felt, England, 1790, 46cm x 24cm (Milan: Zucchi Collection)

In 1987, Giordano Zucchi, a textile group director sensitive to changing tastes in the art of furnishing, came into possession of a handblock of wood and pewter which had formerly been used for the production of hand-printed fabrics. It was only one among many to have been found in a certain factory in Gloucestershire. These handblocks had been the property of the prestigious English textiles company David Evans & Co. who, for more than 150 years, had been gathering them from Europe’s major printing houses. Giordano Zucchi was not one to let an opportunity pass him by and in 1988, this important legacy was renamed “The Zucchi Collection.” Its value was further enhanced by the addition of special copper plates used to create the characteristic “batik” design. Today it is considered to be one of the biggest collections of handblocks for printed fabrics in the world. The cultural value of the Collection gained official recognition in 1997 when it received the Guggenheim Award.

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