Master Printmaker And Former Longtime NIU Art Teacher Has Died

Nov 25, 2019

David Driesbach points to a detail in one of his prints at a 2018 retrospective of his works held at the Rockford University Art Gallery.
Credit Guy Stephens/ WNIJ

A world-renowned printmaker and former Northern Illinois University art teacher has died. David Driesbach was known for his humorous, sometimes fantastic images, and his mastery of intaglio, or engraving, that helped produce those images.

At a retrospective exhibit of his work held at Rockford University in 2018, Driesbach offered words of encouragement to those who might follow.

“Feel free to expand your universe," he said. "If you’re an artist and you want to try intaglio, go all out for it. Give it a chance.”

Driesbach taught at NIU for more than 25 years, retiring in the 1990s. But he never stopped printmaking. According to his family, David Driesbach died Nov. 17 at Wynscape Rehabilitation Center in Wheaton of complications from a recent fall. He was 97.