During the first years my wife and I were running our art gallery, we used to sell serigraphs, giclees and other kinds of copied artworks. Besides the orginal artwork of course. The number of copies used to be limited anywhere between 200 or 250. The actual number is mostly handwritten next to the artist´s signature. All in pencil. In other words, if the writing states 23/250, it means you have copy number 23 of a series of 250. So the series is limited... Except for an unknown number of copies, called the EA edition. This edition, the Epreuve d´Artiste, is supposed to be a test series for the artist to decide whether the colors and quality of the serigraph is according his wishes. The number of EA copies varies from only a few to ten...or more. When we learned that some artists made a re-runs of certain succesful series, in other words the limited number of 250 was raised with a second series of 250 numbered copies, we decided to quit selling these editions and focused our selling to original artworks.
A few years ago more and more artists disapproved of the uncontrollable serigraphs. Large editions are nowadays out of fashion. Instead, artists have smalle series of prints made and then complete these copies with additional artwork. A simple serigraph thus becomes an original artwork, although the basis is still a printed copy made by a printer, not by the artist.
Quality of prints is amazingly good these days. Even regular desktop printers will provide high quality material. Nevertheless, I prefer to have smaller series completely made by myself. I call these copies ID´s, short for Identicals. Although they are not really identical, but more or less similar to the original. Every item is handmade and thus differs in colors and shape from the original. All editions in a series are therefor 100% original pieces of art. More valuable than serigraphs and nice to collect.
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