The Fine Art of Collecting Fine Art Prints

You don’t have to a BFA like me to be a print collector. Instead, concentrate on what you like. Art need not be intimidating, especially if you make purchases based on what will look good over the living room sofa or matching the bedspread. But if you must have a Rembrandt etching or Calder print for investment purposes, head for the library or the Internet and do your homework.

Also, understand the number of fakes in the marketplace and be prepared to make a sizeable payment for the better pieces. Begin with the smaller lower-cost prints and stick with numbered, signed, and documented work. There are dozens of articles available on the Internet regarding the “provenance” and other essential materials needed when making your purchase.

You can also opt for online art & antique auctions in Canberra & Across Australia at ALLBIDS.

What is a print, you may ask? Rather than pay for an original, one of a kind oil or acrylic painting costing thousands, you buy a reproduction that is often designed for the mass market.

They can be lithographs, serigraphs, etchings, silk-screens, mixed-media, and other print-making techniques used to create multiple pieces. Each is then numbered and signed by the artist. They provide a letter of authenticity guarantying the process and the outcome.

These “editions” can be small, of fifty or so, or large including many thousands. But, for a collector, the number is meaningless. For some artists that have passed away, even a large edition, because of the limited amount of remaining pieces and the fame of the artist, their art can still fetch huge amounts at auction.

Auctions can be a good place to start in your pursuit of artwork. If you’re a cruiser, almost every large ship has an “at sea” auction opportunity to buy a less expensive piece for a few hundred dollars or so. Don’t forget these are unframed prices, so be prepared to spend another hundred for that expense. There are many online auctions, but you are relying on a picture for the only look at your art and the colors may not be accurate when the print arrives by mail. Try visiting a local gallery first and get familiar with certain artists you like