Isaac and Ede Antique Prints
Vue d'Optique China
Vue d'Optique China

Vue d'Optiques or Optical Views

[Pair of river scenes in the Nanking region of China.]

16 x 12"

Engraved on copper by Francois (Franz) Xavier Habermann and published in Augsburg circa 1750.

Habermann was born in Germany in 1721 and spent his working life in Augsburg in Bavaria where the printing trade thrived throughout the middle of the C18th. His optical views are amongst the most charming and accomplished produced during this time. In these lively scenes we see pagodas, palm trees and mountain peaks forming a dramatic backdrop to the commercial activity that takes place along the riverbank. Numerous junks are tethered to the shore whilst frenzied commercial discussions take place between traders.

These optical views or perspectives, as they were commonly called, reached the peak of their popularity in cities such as Augsburg and Paris in the middle of the C18th. They were typically horizontal in orientation, firmly engraved with lines of perspective and strongly coloured, initially depicting the capital cities of Europe but later embracing more exotic locations from around the world, including China where these views are taken from. As people moved around Europe and further overseas these views became increasingly popular as an entertainment once the traveller had arrived home.

£650 pair

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