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Embossed or typographic printing

Centro di documentazione delle arti grafiche “Grifani-Donati” 1799

The technology in printing, which allows for the production of many copies of written text from only one matrix, was born in China several centuries after Christ and was used mainly to decorate fabric. Thanks to the German Giovanni Gutenberg the invention of movable type or type printing (small metallic prisms of variable segments, upon each one of them a character appears embossed back to front) known as, specifically, typographics or typography. The printing system introduced by Gutenberg is based on mobile characters made of metal, that are arranged by hand on a sort of plate in such a way as to create a mirrored version of the page that you want to produce.

This technique is also called relief printing because what is printed, that is, the graphics in the matrix (characters or engravings), are embossed.  Once the matrix is inked, which can be wooden (xylography or woodcut) or on metal, onto which the sheet of paper is pressed, then it undergoes the pressure of the printing press and receives the ink from the blueprint.

The most evident characteristic of typographic printing is that on the reverse of the sheet of paper you can see some light embossed marking from the pressure of the printing press. If you run your finger over it you can feel the writing, the drawings and whatever else is imprinted on the paper on both sides of the sheet of paper.

Grifani-Donati Typography boasts a typographic printing press which is perfectly functionable and was made in 1864 by the company Elia Dell’Orto.

Stampa a rilievo o tipografica