Studying the progression of a work of art can yield insight and pleasure, as emphasized in The Frick Collection’s current exhibit, “The Unfinished Print.,” which continues through August 15, 2004. The first show of its kind at the Frick to be devoted totally to prints and printmaking concentrates on European artists from the 15th to the early 20th century, and the public is being given the opportunity to examine works in various stages, with some 60 prints displayed as examples.
The exhibit makes it possible in various cases to see how the artist expanded the original. Some of what we see are studies in preparation for a painting. What’s especially interesting is that it at one time became fashionable to consider a work in progress as art unto itself.
Artists represented in this exhibition include Albrecht Dürer, Parmigianino, Anthony van Dyke, Rembrant van Rijn, Giovanni Battista Piranesi, Édouard Manet, Edgar Degas, August Rodin, Edvard Munch and Jacques Villon. The curator of the show is Peter Parshall, curator of Old Master Prints for the National Gallery of Art in Washington.