Generalanzeiger Bonn, 29. April 2015

Rezension von Antony Griffiths

- Leiter des Kupferstichkabinetts des British Museum London

Print Quartely, XXV, 2008, 3:

Adam Bartsch.

One anniversary of 2007 that was not widely noted was the 250th birthday of Bartsch, the patron of all print catalogues. An enterprising attempt to rectify the omission is a small catalogue, Adam von Bartsch (1757-1821): Hommage zum 250. Geburtstag des Wiener Graphikers und Kunsthistorikers, by Rudolf Rieger (Bonn, Verlag Franz Schön, 2007, 44pp.,15 b.&w.ills.,€ 8). It accompanied a small exhibition of prints drawn from Rieger´s own collection, which Franz Schön in Bonn has displayed (10 November – 6 December 2007) and published. Rieger evidently feels that the exhibition should have been mounted by the Albertina, which now houses the Hofbibliothek collection on which Bartsch spent his working life.
In it are held six albums that Bartsch assembled and donated himself, of his entire oeuvre. Among Bartsch´s numerous accomplishments was that of being a highly skilled etcher, and on p. 33 is reproduced the elegant plate that he made as the frontispiece to the Hofbibliothek albums, which contain the collection originally assembled by the Mariette firm for Eugene of Savoy. His output was recorded with filial piety by his son and successor Friedrich in 1818. That Catalogue contains 505 numbers, and we are informed in this booklet that Rieger is now working on a new catalogue, which has so far reached a total of 690 plates. Print curators of Bartsch´s days were clearly not only far more talented than their modern successors. They must have had more time too.