David Lynch’s short documentary on the art of lithography

Director David Lynch has created a new short documentary about the lithographic atelier Idem Paris.
(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

The art of fine-art printing gets a loving albeit brief ode from director David Lynch, who has fashioned a seven-minute documentary about the famous Idem Paris atelier.

Idem Paris recently posted the video online and we’ve embedded it below. Virtually wordless, the movie observes the lithographic process with a detached eye, documenting the steps.

Idem Paris was created in 1880 by the printmaker Emile Dufrenoy. The atelier is located in the city’s Montparnasse district, and occupies a 15,000-square-foot space, according to the company’s website.

For Lynch, who has embraced digital technology in his moviemaking in recent years, the documentary is a tribute to analog creativity in which precision is achieved through laborious physical work rather than the click of a mouse.


The director’s last feature movie was “Inland Empire” in 2006. Since then he has been hard at work on his online projects, promoting transcendental meditation and creating visual art that he has shown at galleries. His paintings and sculptures were shown in 2011 at a Santa Monica gallery.

On the Idem website, Lynch discusses his introduction to Idem Paris in his typically chipper way, and explains why he thinks “it’s so beautiful!”


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