The Société des Aqua-Fortistes was the French equivalent of the Etching Club in England and similarly it aimed to produce a collection of high quality etchings by the leading artists of the period. Like the Etching Club, the Société des Aqua-Fortistes sought to raise the reputation of the medium from a reproductive technique to a fine art. Although the etching revival began somewhat earlier in England, the French movement exerted a far greater influence on the medium, and included a wider range of prominent artists. The Barbizon painters were among the earliest French artists to participate in the etching revival, and their superb prints helped raise the medium to new heights.
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