Object Timeline

  • We acquired this object.

2018

2021

  • You found it!

Book, Coloritto, or, The Harmony of Colouring in Painting, 1725

This is a Book. It was written by J. C. Le Blon.

This object is not part of the Cooper Hewitt's permanent collection. It was able to spend time at the museum on loan from Smithsonian Libraries as part of Saturated: The Allure and Science of Color.

It is dated 1725. Its medium is letterpress and hand-colored lithograph on paper.

One of the rarest and most groundbreaking books on color, J.C. Le Blon’s Coloritto formed the foundation for modern color printing and was the first publication to document the mixing of “primitive” or primary colors to create secondary colors. A printer and engraver, Le Blon sought a method for mechanically reproducing paintings with layered inks. His reduced color palette includes combinations of red, blue, yellow, white, and black, emphasizing ideal mixtures for skin tone in portraiture. It took 100 years for any other printer to be able to replicate Le Blon’s method.

It is credited Smithsonian Libraries, ND1486 .L44 .

  • Proof
  • 12.6 × 10.2 cm (4 15/16 in. × 4 in.).
  • Gift of Horan Eng. Co..
  • 1949-153-2-a/d
  • Proof
  • -5-d: 12.6 × 10.1 cm (4 15/16 in. × 4 in.) -5-b: 14.3 × 12.8 cm (5 5/8 ×....
  • Gift of Horan Eng. Co..
  • 1949-153-5-a/d
  • Proof
  • 12.6 × 10.1 cm (4 15/16 in. × 4 in.).
  • Gift of Horan Eng. Co..
  • 1949-153-6-a/d

Our curators have highlighted 1 object that are related to this one.

Its dimensions are

H x W (open): 27.9 × 43.9 cm (11 in. × 17 5/16 in.)

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Saturated: The Allure and Science of Color.

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian’s Terms of Use page.

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/1108749845/ |title=Book, Coloritto, or, The Harmony of Colouring in Painting, 1725 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=30 July 2021 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>