FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. Where can I find more information about an artwork I am interested in?
Under the artwork image there will be all the information you need including print run totals, edition numbers and information pertaining to that particular artwork or any matching sets. If you require more information, you may also email us using the contact form, referencing the SKU number located on the product page.
2. What are editions and matching sets?
In printmaking, an edition is a number of prints struck from one plate, usually at the same time. This may be a limited edition, with a fixed number of impressions produced on the understanding that no further impressions will be produced later, or an open edition limited only by the number that can be sold or produced before the plate wears. Limited editions are normally signed by the artist in pencil, and numbered as say 67/100 to show the unique number of that impression and the total edition size.
A matching set would form part of a series or collection of prints/artworks/graphics that feature the same edition numbers. i.e. Night's Passage has 8 unique artworks in the series, a matching set would be editioned with the same Print Run Number i.e. 10/50 on each of the 8 prints. Matching sets are more valuable than a broken set, which could include different numbers, i.e. 10/50, 29/50, 30/50, etc. for each of the 8 artworks forming part of the collection.
3. Why is my Edition selection greyed out?
If your edition selection is greyed out, this means that we no longer have stock of that particular item.
4. What is a limited edition?
Prints are produced in series called editions. Every edition contains a number of prints made from a single plate in a single run. limited editions are (as their name suggest) made in limited amounts. Limited editions can contain anywhere between 2 and several thousand prints, depending on the technique used and intent of the artist. Limited edition prints are typically numbered with a Print Run Number.
5. What is a Print Run Number?
Every print in a limited edition is numbered, usually in pencil at the bottom of the print. This number (that looks like a fraction) is called a print run number and it shows the print’s position in the edition. The print run number is vital for determining the value of a print.
The denominator (the bottom number in the fraction) will show you how many prints were printed in one edition. The upper number (numerator) will show you when each print was created during the run. For example, if you see a 15/100 number on your piece, that means that you have the 15th print from the edition that contains a total of 100 prints.
As far as print run numbers are concerned, the rule is simple: the smaller the number the bigger the value. First impressions in the print run usually reach higher prices since they are considered to be the closest to the artist’s original idea.
6. What is an open edition?
Unlike limited edition prints, open edition prints (also known as unlimited editions), can be reproduced up to the point the plate deteriorates. Open edition prints are not numbered like with limited edition prints, but they may be signed at times.
7. What is an Artist’s Proof?
An artist’s proof (also known as épreuve d’artiste, or E.A) is an impression of a print, taken during the printmaking process to review the state of a plate. In the past, artist’s proofs were the first prints pulled off a fresh plate but nowadays an artist’s proof can be pulled out at any time during the print run. Artist’s proofs are identical to standard edition prints, but unlike regular prints with fractions, these prints are usually marked with A/P (or E.A). Artists usually keep artist’s proofs for themselves so that they can lend them to various institutions for exhibition purposes when the rest of the edition is sold out.
Proofs are particularly desirable among collectors due to their rarity.
8. What is a Printer's Proof?
Printer’s proofs are complimentary prints given to the publisher. There’s just a handful of these and their quantity depends on the number of printers involved in the printing process (each printer gets one proof). These proofs are usually marked "P/P”.
Proofs are particularly desirable among collectors due to their rarity.
9. Why are artist proofs more expensive?
Artist's proofs are a special subset of the regular limited edition. They usually sell for 10-30% more than the regular edition. Artist's proofs began back when limited editions were all hand-pulled from a one-man litho press. The artist's proofs were the first prints pulled off a fresh "stone" (the plate which was drawn or etched by the artist to create the prints). The stone wore down as the number of prints was increased, so that the APs were the sharpest and most colourful of the lot. Thus, they sold for more, being a better product.
Artist's proofs maintain their collectability and value because A) They are a small subset of the edition, and B) they usually come directly from the artist. In these days of mass marketing, getting something directly or even indirectly from the artist is rare.
Artist's proofs are signed "A/P" or "Artist's Proof" and may or may not be numbered with the serial number of that portion of the edition.
Artist's proofs are generally considered a status symbol in the world of art collecting. And their resale value is proportionally higher than the numbered editions.
10. Are graphics valuable?
Prints can be just as valuable as any other artwork and certain prints are known to reach seven or eight-figure prices at auctions. One of the first prints ever made by Pablo Picasso entitled The Frugal Repast (Le repas frugal) sold for GBP 1,945,250 in 2012, while Au lit: Le baiser, a lithograph by Toulouse-Lautrec reached a staggering price of USD 12,485,000. Cit: Art Acacia - https://www.artacacia.com/blogs/posts/limited-edition-prints-are-they-worth-anything
11. Are graphics original art?
Just like paintings or sculptures, original art prints (serigraphs/lithographs) are an original work of art which adds to their value and their price. That’s why you should expect to pay much more for an original art print than for a reproduction.
12. Why should I invest in graphics?
Buying prints can be a great way to acquire pieces by famous artists at affordable prices, but they can also serve as a great addition to an all-around collection that encompasses entire body of work by a certain artist (paintings, drawings and prints alike). Since they cost only a fraction of the price of a painting or a photograph, prints are also a great way for new art collectors to kick off their collection.
13. Should I get a Signed or Unsigned print?
Most artists sign their prints at the bottom right corner of the piece. It’s considered that, by signing a print, the artist approves it, and, claims it as his or her own work. Signatures count for a lot at a print market since they add to the artwork’s authenticity. The value of a signed print is usually significantly higher than the value of an unsigned print, so if you have a choice, it’s always better to go for the signed version.
14. What are seriliths?
As a special form of lithography, the serilith process is sometimes used. Seriliths are mixed media original prints created in a process in which an artist uses the lithograph and serigraph processes. The separations for both processes are hand-drawn by the artist. The serilith technique is used primarily to create fine art limited print editions.
15. What are serigraphs?
A serigraph is a silkscreen, and a form of screen printing. To make a serigraph, the artist places a stencil on the fabric and forces ink through the places where the material is stencil-free. Each colour in the piece must be applied with a separate screen. In a serigraph, the paint tends to sit on top of the paper and may be felt with a finger. The result from this laborious process is a fine quality print that is an original artwork. Each serigraph print differs slightly from the next, picking up subtle nuances in character and attitude through the printing process.
16. What are lithographs?
A lithograph is a print made from a drawing or painting applied to a flat surface such as stone (lithographic limestone) or metal (plate lithograph). The drawing is made with an oily substance, which the ink will cling to. The artist works on a separate stone or plate for each colour. Traditionally this flat surface was a specially prepared limestone, but today grained aluminium printing plates and the original stones are used. An image is drawn, painted or photographically applied to the stone or plate using a greasy medium. The image will repel water and accept ink. Then the plate is placed on a special press and paper is then placed on the print and is run through the press by hand. Like many other printing processes, one colour at a time is printed. Usually, one colour is printed per day. So a print that is built up of ten colours would take the master printer ten days to print.
17. What are Plate Lithographs?
The stone lithograph is the oldest lithography technique. Original stone lithographs can also be referred to as hand-pulled lithographs and are hand-drawn on limestone or marble. To incorporate more than one colour, multiple stones must be used. This type of lithograph is unique in that it is hand-made by an artist who draws directly onto a stone or other similar material. These lithographs are typically valued more highly due to their quality and the fact that a lower run of prints is usually made.
An original plate lithograph involves the artist hand drawing the image that is being reproduced onto aluminum plates. These plates are cheaper than the stones used in original stone lithography and they are easier to transport.