Prints And French Slang...

The following comment was left by anonymous, on a post from a month or so ago. I felt I needed to respond.

Does anyone here even know where the term 'giclee' came from ? It's french slang for ejaculation ... seriously! Probably a joke that someone made because the ink spurts on to the substrate and it stuck. I personally think that giclees are ruining art. People think they're buying something of value, which in reality is just an inkjet print.

As far as the term giclee, he's correct. As sick as that is. I have always wondered about the origin of the term myself. It most likely was a joke that stuck.

As far as giclees ruining art...

My take is this. Giclees are like all new technology. When Serigraphs were the newest thing, everyone cried and said that the serigraph would ruin art. Lithographs were the only way to reproduce work. Eventually serigraphs became accepted and for some time were the standard. A serigraph is just a silk screen with a fancy name. It's the same process used to print tee shirts.

Now we are hearing the same thing about giclees. Years ago when they were new to the art world I wouldn't own one. The quality wasn't there yet. Today they are a much better quality. They can be archival if done correctly. That part is the key to any print. They must be done correctly. Yes, technically they are just an inkjet.

You also have to take into account the number of works that are printed. Is it only a few or is it thousands?

From a reproduction stand point, you can't get closer to the original. Giclees have also allowed many more artists to have prints of their work. They're easier and less expensive to make.

I know of museums that have giclees in their collections. Quality is in the eye of the owner. I guess only time will tell what impact they will have on the world of art.


Anonymous said…

I'm delurking. I guess there is no right answer to this. It's sort of like the CD/Vinyl/digital music debate. I'm of the opinion that if it allows people to bring good quality reproductions into their homes and it allows more people to enjoy art, and allow the artist another avenue for earning money. So it's a good thing.

That being said, like vinyl, nothing sounds quite as good.

Love the blog.
Mad William said…

Thanks for delurking. I do the same thing though.

I agree, the more people that can be exposed to art the better. Prints are a great place to start your collection.

It's all good.

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