Fresco painting (affresco in Italian) is painting with powdered pigments on fresh plaster. An ancient, extremely durable way of working on a wall or ceiling, it was revived by Italian medieval artists, and flowered brilliantly in the Renaissance and Baroque, only to gradually disappear as a common artistic medium over the course of the nineteenth century. In the twentieth century a combination of greater expertise in restoration and a handful of artists interested in the technique have sponsored a mini-renaissance of fresco painting, and new works can now be found across the globe.
No other artistic medium is so evocative of a landscape, a culture, and of craft, as true fresco. It is especially because of its durability that the ancient frescoes that have come down to us continue to occupy such a powerful place in our imagination. Since the middle of the last century, new generations of artists committed to craft, beauty, and meaning have created works that extend that ancient tradtion, and these new frescoes deserve to be known by a wider audience.
David Mayernik's book The Challenge of Emulation in Art and Architecture now available from Ashgate.
New fresco to be unveiled at the Festa di S. Cresci, Pieve di S. Cresci in Valcava, 20 July
Fresco Trail is a site dedicated to sharing information on the contemporary practice of fresco painting: maps and guides to show you where to find the work of contemporary fresco painters, information on fresco materials, processes, and techniques, and more....