Atelier Clot – A history of lithographic artistic heritage
Atelier Clot is the world’s oldest lithography workshop and is located in the charming Marais district of Paris. With a proud history dating back to 1896, the workshop was founded by Auguste Clot, one of the capital’s most talented lithographers at the time. His pioneering work in the use of color attracted the attention of the young artist group “Nabis” and the art dealer Ambroise Vollard, who commissioned works for his famous printmaker albums.
From 1896, Atelier Clot became home to the production of the most beautiful masterpieces of color lithography, bearing the signatures of great artists such as Degas, Cézanne, Renoir, Sisley, Redon, Bonnard, Vuillard, Signac, Munch, Rodin and many more.
Auguste Clot remained head of the workshop until 1934, when his son, André Clot, took over the reins. At this time, the workshop was also visited by renowned artists such as Rouault, Matisse, Denis, Roussel, Guillaumin, Foujita and others.
In the late 1950s, a young, newly qualified lithographer, Peter Bramsen, came to Paris to further his education. Already in 1963, Peter Bramsen became a partner in the old workshop, which was now owned by the founder’s grandson, Guy Georges. In 1965, Clot, Bramsen & Georges were founded and Bramsen became artistic and professional leader. In 1968, the workshop moved from Rue du Cherche-Midi to larger premises in the heart of the Marais district on Rue Vieille du Temple. Here, a host of artists such as Asger Jorn, Alechinsky, Bram Van Velde, Lindström, Wyckaert, Pol Bury, Topor, Arman, Saura, Bjørn Nørgaard, Voss, Toledo, Michaux, Soulages, Calder, Wifredo Lam and many others gathered to work with stone prints.
His son Christian Bramsen became a partner in 1988 and is the guarantor that the high standards continue, just as they did when the company was founded over 100 years ago. Christian Bramsen, who also serves as chief printer, has an international orientation and uses his experience to organize exhibitions both domestically and abroad with the artists associated with the publishing house. Most recently, the third generation of the Bramsen family has joined the company. Christian’s son Victor is a trained art dealer in France, and is the daily manager of the gallery in Paris.
The workshop in Paris has been represented in Denmark for over 30 years. In 2004 Morten Brunholt takes over the representation of the workshop and publisher in Scandinavia. In 2013, Morten and Christian set up the Danish publishing house Atelier Clot, Bramsen & Brunholt. The publisher publishes high-quality Danish and international art. Since 2021, the lithographs have been on display in the gallery at Frederiksø in Svendborg, Denmark. Here the focus is on to preserve and develop the ancient craft of lithography and offer our guests artistic experiences of international class. The beautifully situated site on Frederiksø by the harbor in Svendborg was formerly used by Svendborg Shipyard and is therefore steeped in history and the maritime environment that characterizes Svendborg. The gallery is managed by Charlotte and Morten Brunholt.
Today, the Paris workshop is equipped with the following staff and materials: Christian Bramsen as head printer and owner, Thomas Marin as lithographic printer, Priscille Arai as lithographic assistant, Ariel Termine as graphic designer and Victor Bramsen as sales and marketing manager. The workshop extends over 300 m2 with an 80 m2 basement and includes three hand presses, a copper printing press, a Voirin printing press, a paper cutter and around 250 litho stones (approx. 15 tons). There are also three 44″ inkjet printers and one 60″ inkjet printer available. Since the 1960s, over 500 artists have printed more than 6,000 lithographs in the workshop.
The workshop and gallery in Svendborg includes a 100 m2 gallery and a 75 m2 workshop with two French hand presses, a German Schnell press, a copperplate press and framing tools. Morten Brunholt acts as owner and sales manager, while Charlotte Brunholt is responsible for sales and marketing. Dina Schäfer works in sales and in the gallery.
Today, Atelier Clot is an internationally recognized workshop and publishing house that remains true to its artistic heritage. For decades, the workshop has been a source of inspiration and a place where artists have been able to explore lithography and become part of the same story told by past masters such as Renoir, Degas and Munch. With continued artistic collaborations and a passion for the art form of lithography, Atelier Clot is living proof of how tradition and innovation can coexist.