Today's postings

  1. [Baren 40523] About your posting: Editioning and ethics ("")
  2. [Baren 40524] Center for Contemporary Art (ArtfulCarol #
  3. [Baren 40525] RE: New Baren Digest (Text) V50 #5119 (Jan 28, 2010) ("Sales")
  4. [Baren 40526] Re: Center for Contemporary Art, Editions further discussion (Julio.Rodriguez #
  5. [Baren 40527] re. prints in the trash (Joe Martin)
Member image

Message 1
From: ""
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 2010 14:41:08 GMT
Subject: [Baren 40523] About your posting: Editioning and ethics
Send Message: To this poster

Gee, Karma, 'sophistry', that makes me more than a bit jealous; it's
as if I've been 'one-upped'. Of all the things I've been called over
the years I've never been accused of being a sophist and am going to
make a point of annoying better educated jerks or, at the very least,
jerks who know how to use a Thesaurus:-)

Your editioning practices are, of course, quite acceptable,
environmentally responsible even. Unless you are doing something
unrepeatable, like a reduction print, there really is no point in
making an entire run if you are not sure how it will sell. Who (but
your critic apparently) would care if there were fewer that the
stated number of prints extant? Who would ever know if one or a dozen
of an edition had been destroyed by fire, flood or whatever?
Editioning piecemeal has been and will continue to be an acceptable


>Since I have been called a liar and accused of sophistry via a private
>email from a member, I would like to say one more thing regarding
>When I spend hours carving a block, I am NOT going to limit myself to
>many I can print that first go at it. If I am unsure of its
>popularity, I
>might print 20 and if I am more confident, 40. But the several days
>designing and several more spent carving are only income to me when a
>sells, so I am not going to limit that to a tiny number. I want to price
>my prints low enough so that people can take them home so I need the
>to print an edition that allows that.
>Currently, I am using 100 as my limit. The edition number is the promise
>that I will never print more than that, NOT the promise that I did print
>more than that at the first sitting.
Member image

Message 2
From: ArtfulCarol #
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 2010 17:59:13 GMT
Subject: [Baren 40524] Center for Contemporary Art
Send Message: To this poster

The Center for Contemporary Art, Norwalk, CT posted the prints of their
Exhibit "The Art of the Transcription"
The prints were to be based on a past work by another artist..
My "Sleeping Muse" woodblock 1/20, is an interpretation of a
Brancusssi sculpture by
Roy Lichenstein.
Do I have another 19? Let's let Sleeping Muses lie!.

Scroll down L's

Carol Lyons
Member image

Message 3
From: "Sales"
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 2010 18:32:08 GMT
Subject: [Baren 40525] RE: New Baren Digest (Text) V50 #5119 (Jan 28, 2010)
Send Message: To this poster

I think that I may have some insight into the debate, if you can call it
that, over printing editions en masse. We deal with printmakers around
the world, and some things are truly international.

With the exception of publishers printing a client's work, I don't know
of a single printmaker that does it in one fell swoop. Many, maybe the
majority, never complete the entire edition. I think someone said it
correctly earlier; it is a promise from the artist to the buyer that
there will be no more than that many ever printed.

By the way - if you haven't done it already, don't forget to sign up as
a fan of Graphic Chemical & Ink.
ref=mf. It's the only way to access some of the special offers that we
come up with from time to time - besides, it feeds my ego. We're, as of
last night, running neck and neck with George Wendt's (Norm on Cheers)
fan page.

Dean Clark

Graphic Chemical & Ink Company
Member image

Message 4
From: Julio.Rodriguez #
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 2010 19:57:44 GMT
Subject: [Baren 40526] Re: Center for Contemporary Art, Editions further discussion
Send Message: To this poster

Congratulations Carol on your print "Sleeping Muse" at the CCP exhibit, is
there a web link to see the image enlarged ?

Lee writes about master printers..."It was with these people in mind that
the 'rules' for editions were created".

This topic has been done to death.....but I like this statement by Lee, it
makes sense to me.

Master printers are PAID to print a complete edition, that is their work together with the artist to bring an image to life and to
repeat the process EXACTLY for the complete length of the edition.
Regardless of how successful the print turns out to be (and sometimes the
edition size is determined by prior demand for an image or for an artist's
work) the master printer is going to be PAID for his work. We get paid
only when we SELL our prints....not when we make them. Unless the image
becomes famous or highly in demand you would not want to rehire (and pay
again) the master printer or Studio (if he/she is still available months
or years later) and go through the whole QA process again at additional
cost. Certainly there might be certain business agreements between artist
and master printmaker but for the most part each has a clearly defined
role and it's paid accordingly.

The rest of us artist/printmakers (those of us that print for ourselves
and not professionally for other artists) really can't afford to print and
have hundreds of unsold prints taking up space in our workshops. We are
less demanding with our guidelines since we work for ourselves and not for
others. Even if we had the space and financial means to print large
editions in one run why do such a thing unless you know for sure your
prints will sell.

In the case of a master printer doing an edition the guidelines are so
strict and adhere to that it makes all the sense in the world to print all
of it at one shot to maintain control of the end product - the print.
Those of us that print limited editions in small batches or on demand
really have no way to guarantee the outcome over time. Paper, ink, paint
and other materials all change over time and have slight variations from
batch to batch. A red in one tube of ink could be slightly different from
a red in another tube even if it comes from the same manufacturer. Paper
ages and can become brittle. Even our woodblocks shrink or expand with
time sometimes making registration nearly impossible unless the blocks are
recarved or altered. Unless you have saved away the exact number of
sheets of paper and enough ink from the original batch to print future
batches I don't see how there can be any guarantee that a batch printed a
year or five years later is going to match the original. An even if you
stored the materials away (what a waste !) paper ages and inks change
chemically or turn bad. Even we change both physically and
artistically.....our tastes and 'eye' change over time.

So there is a final point from the view of a collector.....all else
equals, prints done years apart even from the same blocks are going to
have a huge different appearance because of aging that prints all done in
one earlier edition. That is so obvious with Japanese prints like the
Hiroshi Yoshida prints...although these are not numbered the old prints
from the 20s and 30's have a completely different feel that modern day
reprints from the same blocks.

Just more fuel to the fire I guess.........Julio
Member image

Message 5
From: Joe Martin
Date: Fri, 29 Jan 2010 02:36:33 GMT
Subject: [Baren 40527] re. prints in the trash
Send Message: To this poster

Hey, Barbara,

I already told my daughter to go ahead and pitch everything in my flat files in the trash
when I leave this mortal coil. Our old printmaking prof., Dennis Cunningham, told me he
thought it was good to make editions of 20 when you are a relatively new (or unknown) artist.
He is well known and he only prints a few at a time. Makes more when he sells out. Actually,
I think he has someone print his prints for him.

Suzi SM =