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Joaquín Sorolla

Los paisajes de Sorolla


Year: 2016


One of Joaquín Sorolla’s greatest passions was painting outdoors, using nature as his model, a predilection that he discovered in his youth, as a student. Many of his fellow students have recounted that before classes began at 8 o’clock in the morning, Sorolla would be out wandering around the outskirts of Valencia, looking for good locations to paint landscapes. 

In homage to the Valencian artist’s great love for painting in the open air, Artika and the Sorolla Foundation are delighted to present Los paisajes de Sorolla (Sorolla’s landscapes). This book represents a journey guided by the great artist through the places and settings that he wandered through, painted, and loved throughout his life, in the form of a selection of drawings, in a single, limited edition of 2,998 numbered copies. 

An Art Book, bound in cotton fabric that resembles a canvas and featuring a reproduction of part of the painting Vendimiando. Jerez (The grape harvest. Jerez, 1914), contains 71 drawings which follow the theme of landscapes. They are reproduced in facsimile format, die-cut like the originals and glued into the book. The painstaking selection of works, carried out by the Sorolla Museum, shows all the different kinds of landscapes the artist produced, as well as the different techniques he used, including pencil, charcoal, ink, chalk, watercolours and gouache.

The volume is divided up into six chapters which contain large format fold-out reproductions of paintings by Sorolla, all with a landscape-related theme.

A Study Book (which is in itself a unique work) helps the reader to explore the artist’s life and work, thanks to explanations and criticism from leading experts, including the painter’s great-granddaughter, Blanca Pons-Sorolla, researchers at the Sorolla Museum and the Director for the Conservation of 19th-century Paintings at the Prado Museum. 

Los paisajes de Sorolla includes two plates with great artistic value, presented in Art Folders that are designed so the plates can be exhibited individually. These two drawings feature two of the techniques most commonly used by Sorolla – one in pencil, Orillas del Tajo, Villaseca (On the banks of the Tajo, Villaseca, 1882-1888), while the other uses the combined technique of pencil and watercolours: Paisaje con río y dos torres (Landscape with river and two towers, 1882). 

All the items are presented in an impressive case, handmade and comprised of two polymethacrylate pieces, 2.5 cm thick, and featuring an engraving of the artist’s signature. It represents a window on to the landscapes that Sorolla explored, enjoyed and painted.

The production process

Technical experts adjust and correct the colour proofs, thus enabling them to make alterations to the definitive printing plates. The specialists analyse the drawings one by one.

The plates, die-cut like the originals, are fixed onto the book’s pages using three drops of glue. On the back of each one there is the stamp of the Sorolla Museum and the number of each copy.

In view of its size, the body of the book has been hand-sewn by experts using top-quality cotton thread.

The fold-outs present each of the six chapters into which the Art Book is divided, and are carefully glued into the book by hand.

Before the covers are added, and to ensure they are fixed perfectly, the spine of the book is moulded and its upper and lower parts strengthened using cotton head bands.

A cotton fabric which reproduces the texture of canvas is the base for the six-ink digital printing on the book cover, and which highlights the intensity and tonality of the original painting.

Each piece of printed fabric is cut to size of the book for binding. The printed motif is an enlarged detail of Sorolla’s painting Vendimiando. Jerez (The grape harvest. Jerez, 1914).

The Art Book is hand-bound with cardboard glued onto the book’s fly leaves, a layer of foam and the printed fabric.

The polymethacrylate sheets that form the case have been specially manufactured for this project; they have a 98% transparency and are 2.5 cm thick.

The artist’s signature is engraved on the interior of the front sheet of the case. Thanks to laser engraving, a translucent tone is achieved which stands out against the cover’s colourful background.

The iron joining the two polymethacrylate sheets undergoes a prior oxidation process which also produces ochre tones; the result is highly evocative of Castilian landscapes.

The two sheets are joined using a special glue, after which the oxidised iron plate is fixed on. The detachable lateral section can be secured using a system of magnets.

Technical specifications

  • Two polymethacrylate sheets, 41 x 53 x 12.5 cm
  • Thickness of sheets: 2.5 cm
  • Joined by lateral sections with an oxidised iron trim and secured shut by neodymium magnet clasps
  • Sorolla’s signature laser-printed in one ink
  • Weight when empty: 15.5 kg
  • Exterior dimensions: 35.3 x 45.7 cm
  • Number of pages: 204
  • Total number of facsimiles: 71, die-cut
  • Fold-out: six; size when open: 89.6 x 69 cm
  • Paper used for book: Tintoretto Gesso, 200 g
  • Paper used for fold-outs: Tintoretto Gesso, 140 g
  • Paper used for facsimiles: Old Mill Bianco, 100 g
  • Printing of book and fold-outs: five inks
  • Printing of facsimiles: four inks
  • Binding: hardback, sewn with cotton thread
  • Cover: cotton fabric printed in six inks
  • Size: 35.3 x 45.7 cm
  • Number of pages: 192
  • Paper: Tatami White, 170 g
  • Printing: five inks
  • Binding: sewn, hardback
  • Covers: double cardboard, 350 g
  • Printing of cover: fabric printed in four inks, protective lamination
  • 2 protective diptychs
  • - Size: 35.3 x 45.7 cm
  • - Paper for folders: Tintoretto Gesso, 300 g
  • 2 art plates
  • - Printing of drawings: four inks
  • - Paper for facsimiles: Old Mill Bianco, 100 g