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Gutenberg vs. Coster at Penrith Museum

Wednesday, 11 July 2018
By Print21

Penrith Museum of Printing.

Industry veteran Peter Butterworth will examine the history of the letterpress at a special presentation this Saturday afternoon at the Penrith Museum of Printing.

Johann Gutenberg, 1397-1468, German inventor and printer, has long been credited with the invention of a method of printing from movable type, including the use of metal mould’s and alloys, a special press, and oil based inks – a method that, with refinements and increased mechanization, remained the principal means of printing until the late 20th century.

But there’s increasing evidence that questions the official story, says Butterworth.

Europeans thought by some to have preceded Gutenberg in the practice of his art include Laurens Koster, (Coster, 1370-1440 Haarlem, Holland), and Pamfilo Castaldi, (1398-1490 Feltre, Italy).

Similar printing had also been done earlier in China and Korea. In China, Pi Sheng invented printing from movable woodblocks in 1040, and printing with movable type made of clay was also prevalent; in Korea, movable copper type was invented as early as 1392.

A presentation titled Gutenberg vs. Coster or was it Coster the imposter will begin on Saturday at 2.30pm in the museum’s 1940 letterpress print house.

Butterworth arrived in Australia from the UK in 1966 and has worked in all areas of the industry. He also owned a design, art and print company called Artwise for more than 10 years.

The Penrith Museum of Printing is located in the grounds of the Penrith Showground Paceway, Ransley Street, Penrith, NSW Australia. Phone: 0415 625 573

 

 

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