Honour surpasses Gold: Hendrick Goltzius’s Printing Firm

May 30 2012 to August 6 2012
Rijksmuseum Philips Wing

Hendrick Goltzius (1558-1617) is considered the most significant and influential engraver of his day. As a gifted printmaker he took on the major publishing houses of Antwerp, rivalling famous Northern and Italian artists and even the great masters who had preceded him such as Albrecht Dürer and Lucas van Leyden. He taught talented apprentices his techniques and let them engrave his designs in his own distinct style. Jacques de Gheyn, Jan Muller, Jacob Matham, Jan Saenredam and other prominent Dutch printmakers learned their trade at Goltzius’s studio in Haarlem. From 1582, the prints that rolled from his press would be on sale within months at Frankfurt’s Buchmesse, and at art dealers in Rome, Venice and Paris. Selling his prints on the international market brought Goltzius great fame and considerable wealth. Yet, as his motto ‘Eer boven Golt’ (Honour surpasses Gold) indicates, this ambitious man was more interested in fame as an artist than in profit.

This presentation accompanies the publication, in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum, of a new catalogue featuring all the prints which can now be attributed to Goltzius.