Painter’s Keys Ponders Prints vs. Originals

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At the heart of it, prints made from reproductions of originals give artists the opportunity to create a secondary cash flow from their originals.

If you haven’t checked out the Painter’s Keys, you are missing a wonderful resource. The site comes from the creative mind and boundless energy of one of Canada’s leading fine artists, the inestimable Robert Genn. Genn could easily be described as a Canadian national treasure for his contributions to the world of art. He is an accomplished painter with an enviable reputation and extraordinary oeuvre. Since 2000, he has generously shared his kind nature, deep thoughts and extensive knowledge of art and painting with thousands upon thousands of other painters and art aficionados from around the globe via his Painter’s Keys Web site The site also is the world’s largest repository for art quotes. Go there and sign up for the free Twice-Weekly Newsletter. I guarantee you will be charmed, informed and inspired. While you are there, check out Bob’s brand new book, Love Letters to Art.

Should Art Guilds/Clubs Allow Prints in Shows?

Given the scope of this blog, it should be no surpise February 22 edition of the Twice Weekly Newsletter titled Prints or Originals caught my eye. It concerned a letter to Robert Genn from a reader asking about his thoughts about her club’s disallowing prints in shows it sponsors with the exception of photography. What makes reading the newsletter topics more interesting is the feedback from other readers. In the case of the aforementioned topic, I was compelled by the subject matter to respond. It was selected to be published; to review my comments, read through or scroll down the ones above it on the link.

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The Benefits to Print Far Outweigh the Negatives

I would be the first to agree there can be problems with prints from outright forgeries to low quality, non-archival desktop homemade prints marketed as "giclees", but I believe the evidence shows the benefits for having prints in the market far outweigh the problems. At the heart of it, prints made from reproductions of originals give artists the opportunity to create a secondary cash flow from their originals. When a business plan is properly executed around reproductions, it can help artists to build a business and support themselves in ways simply selling originals cannot. That fact alone is enough for me to find prints a suitable medium for most artists to embrace, and collectors too.

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