Figural Prints

The representation of the figure has long been an important exploration in a multitude of artistic methods. An interest in classical motifs and anatomy was revived in the Renaissance; artists were concerned with representing the minutia of the human form. This interest was scientific, but also served an artistic purpose as artists wished to more accurately paint and draw the body.

Interest in the human figure coincided with the rise of printmaking in Western Europe. Printmaking assisted with the dissemination of anatomical illustrations, helping to advance scientific study and medical technology. Artists like Andrea Mantegna borrowed from rediscovered classical art in his study of the human form and used printmaking to reproduce his images for distribution to a wide audience.

Interest in figural art continued throughout the early 20th century, though artistic attention did turn to landscape, industrial scenes, and eventually abstract expressionism. The figure also has a place in contemporary printmaking, as artists moved away from abstraction in the post war period.


Quick Facts

  • In the early 1500s, the Italian painter and printmaker Parmigianino created exceptional figural engravings, etchings, and woodcuts. He used the etching technique to work out the figure in the sinuous style of mannerism
  • The German Expressionist group Die Brucke explored the human figure primarily through woodcut prints, favoring the rough, primitive result from quickly drawn sketches
  • Lucien Freud created etchings early in his career, then rediscovered etching in the 1980s. Freud drew directly onto the copper plate, and his etchings are notable for the candor with which he treats his subjects, especially his nudes

Recommended Items at Auction

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SALVADOR DALI "LA PETITE CHOUETTE" LIMITED EDITION COLOR ETCHING
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
SALVADOR DALI "LA PETITE CHOUETTE" LIMITED EDITION COLOR ETCHING
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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ATTR KEITH HARING Signed Lithograph
Oct 20, 10:00 AM EDT
ATTR KEITH HARING Signed Lithograph
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc
Est: $700- $1,500
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ATTR ALPHONSE MUCHA Lithograph
Oct 20, 10:00 AM EDT
ATTR ALPHONSE MUCHA Lithograph
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MARC CHAGALL "ARTIST PHOENIX" SIGNED LITHOGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
MARC CHAGALL "ARTIST PHOENIX" SIGNED LITHOGRAPH
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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CLARENCE MILLET Signed Claiborne Court
Oct 20, 10:00 AM EDT
CLARENCE MILLET Signed Claiborne Court
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc
Est: $100- $500
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ERTE "E" (FROM ALPHABET SUITE) LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
ERTE "E" (FROM ALPHABET SUITE) LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
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PABLO O'HIGGINS "BIRDCATCHER" LITHOGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
PABLO O'HIGGINS "BIRDCATCHER" LITHOGRAPH
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
$508 Bids
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PETER MAX "UMBRELLA MAN" SIGNED SERIGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
PETER MAX "UMBRELLA MAN" SIGNED SERIGRAPH
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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REMBRANDT "BEGGAR WOMAN LEANING ON A STICK" DRYPOINT ETCHING
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
REMBRANDT "BEGGAR WOMAN LEANING ON A STICK" DRYPOINT ETCHING
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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Signed 19th c. Oil on Board of Man in Apron
Oct 24, 6:00 PM EDT
Signed 19th c. Oil on Board of Man in Apron
by Caswell Prewitt Realty, INC
Est: $0- $0
$508 Bids
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EARLY PETER MAX "SATCHIDANANDA GURU" SIGNED SILKSCREEN ON PAPER
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
EARLY PETER MAX "SATCHIDANANDA GURU" SIGNED SILKSCREEN ON PAPER
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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Max Ernst, "Tout en un plus un", Radierung von 1971, gerahmt
Oct 22, 10:00 AM CEST
Max Ernst, "Tout en un plus un", Radierung von 1971, gerahmt
by K&K – Auktionen in Heidelberg
Est: €1,200- €1,400
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SALVADOR DALI "TO EV'RY CAPTIVE SOUL" SIGNED LIMITED EDITION ETCHING
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
SALVADOR DALI "TO EV'RY CAPTIVE SOUL" SIGNED LIMITED EDITION ETCHING
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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Grant Wood 1892-1942 Signed Lithograph on Paper
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Grant Wood 1892-1942 Signed Lithograph on Paper
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
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Jacques Boullaire, "Te Hoa, Tahiti", Farblithographie, gerahmt
Oct 22, 10:00 AM CEST
Jacques Boullaire, "Te Hoa, Tahiti", Farblithographie, gerahmt
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Est: €500- €600
€6005 Bids
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Roberto Antonio Sebastian Matta, Le figure.
Oct 27, 10:00 AM CEST
Roberto Antonio Sebastian Matta, Le figure.
by Gonnelli Casa d'Aste
Est: €180- €360
€2805 Bids
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ERTE "LA MER BLANCHE" LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
ERTE "LA MER BLANCHE" LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
$1305 Bids
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SALVADOR DALI "GLORY THAT WAS SPAIN'S" E.A. HAND COLORED ETCHING SIGNED
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
SALVADOR DALI "GLORY THAT WAS SPAIN'S" E.A. HAND COLORED ETCHING SIGNED
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
$1105 Bids
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Rufino Tamayo FIGURA SOBRE ESTUCO (PEREDA 241) Color Mixografia
Oct 19, 11:00 AM EDT
Rufino Tamayo FIGURA SOBRE ESTUCO (PEREDA 241) Color Mixografia
by Doyle New York
Est: $1,500- $2,500
$1,1005 Bids
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UTAGAWA HIROSHIGE "OISO-TORA-GA-AME" WOODBLOCK PRINT
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
UTAGAWA HIROSHIGE "OISO-TORA-GA-AME" WOODBLOCK PRINT
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
$405 Bids
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ERTE "ALADDIN & HIS BRIDE" LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
Nov 07, 9:00 AM MST
ERTE "ALADDIN & HIS BRIDE" LIMITED EDITION SIGNED SERIGRAPH
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Est: $0- $0
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Jose Clemente Orozco (Mexican, 1883-1949)
Oct 26, 10:00 AM EDT
Jose Clemente Orozco (Mexican, 1883-1949)
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Est: $1,000- $2,000
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NIKE AIR FORCE 1 FLYLEATHER RUOHAN WANG SNEAKERS
Oct 24, 10:00 AM MST
NIKE AIR FORCE 1 FLYLEATHER RUOHAN WANG SNEAKERS
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
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Sellers Who Sell Figural Prints


Dane Fine Art Auctions

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