Every day we are confronted with a flood of visual images. Present-day visual culture owes its existence in large part to the development of photography and the illustrated magazine in the nineteenth century. But at least as important were the print publishers of the eighteenth century. The north Italian Remondini family owned the largest print publishing house in Europe at the time. The Remondinis broke with tradition by aiming their production mainly at a broad, middle-class public. They produced in large quantities and cheaply, and distributed their work on an unprecedented scale. Thousands upon thousands of their prints reached buyers in the farthest corners of Europe as well as other parts of the world (especially South America). All this visual material, however varied it might have been, had one common feature: it was meant to correspond with the buyers' perception of the world.
This study sheds light on the "Remondini phenomenon" by offering a detailed analysis of this family's richly varied picture production. Large numbers of unknown prints have been identified with the help of the Remondini catalogs, sources which until now have attracted little scholarly attention.