Dear Kobi, While doing research on fine art prints I came across your site and rather enjoyed your forum on Picasso prints. The reason for the research and even more concern after reading your forum is contained below. I recently purchased a hand signed Matisse print online from a Canadian dealer. Upon receiving it the certificate of authenticity was suspect. I asked for details or credentials, such as your association with ifaa, and was not given any. The print is from the cover of the Verve 13 publication and I am fairly sure of its authenticity. However, I am concerned with the signature. There is a complete guarantee with the print but I would feel better giving it as a […]
Dear Dr. Ledor (Kobi), I wished to thank you for the very thoughtful and clear discussion of the caveats that one must consider before purchasing art — especially over the Internet. When I was very young, I went to museums first as part of school trips, then as part of art appreciation courses in high school and college. Eventually going to museums became a part of my life. Nonetheless, until recently, it never occurred to me to buy lithographs from great artists. In light of my background and modest means, being a collector of anything other than original paintings or unknown artists seemed beyond my reach. However, I always have been intrigued by lithographs — especially those of Picasso. I
I feel so lucky and delighted to have found you and your web site today. Thank you for an hour’s patient (sic) telephone tutorial and for your forum material – all of great interest. Your love of these prints and your consequent care of apprentice lovers like myself give a delightful foretaste of how life will be when human values (beauty, love, truth, justice, all that jazz……) rule the world. I’d expected a huge flash plate-glass office outfit, with scary secretaries and bosses who scorned my ignorance. I almost couldn’t make the call. Boy am I glad I did. You have prompted a (for me) revolutionary thought: if Picasso prints do indeed continue to appreciate apace, why should I not
Question [paraphrased from a phone conversation]: Could you recommend those works in your catalogue which in particular would have the maximal future appreciation? -Daniella R. Response: I readily agree with your comment on the phone that not all Picassos are “created equal”, shall we say. Though many Picasso prints are truly masterworks, some clearly are not. The point is that, just like the stock market, the Picasso market already takes such factors into consideration when arriving at a valuation of each of his works. Furthermore, all of his works seem to appreciate in parallel. Provided that the price is right to begin with, appreciation is to be expected across the board. The nice thing about this is that a collector
Question: Basically we’re new to buying art, so we are in the learning process, and, as much as people say, “Don’t buy art as investment,” it’s hard not to think that way. –Luke P. Response: I agree with you that it’s hard not to think of art as an investment, particularly when you’re paying a pretty penny for the art. I’ve always used the allure of the investment as a rationalization for collecting art, especially when I could ill afford it, but, to avoid self-delusion, the art must be truly collectible to qualify. Investing in a blue-chip artist is like buying blue chip stocks, unless you’re convinced you’ve spotted the next Picasso or the next Cisco. I don’t entirely agree
Some of us are collectors and others are not. I suppose that to some extent we may be born that way. But I also believe that there are substantive differences between the presumed collecting instinct and the state of being a “pack rat.” Are these both instincts, or are they learned behaviors? Are they both to be avoided, or only when they get out of hand? And, what constitutes being out of hand? I’ve heard about a person who was crushed to death by the stuff he hoarded in his apartment, and about others who have had serious crises by being literally unable to move in their domiciles due to all their stuff. The fear of getting rid of stuff
Some of my thoughts on Picasso and his early printmaking (1907-1966). It is obvious that he could draw exceptionally well, so all his distortions must be deliberate, willful, and with a specific purpose. As with all great artists he looked back to the origins of the European tradition of art, namely the Greeks. These were discovered during the 14th century Renaissance and lead to an explosion of art in the depiction of the human form as nature dictated, Giotto, DaVinci, Michelangelo, Rubens, and later the Northern Renaissance, Durer, Rembrandt, etc.). But Picasso wanted to go into another direction! As a draftsman he was influence by his father and the Spanish tradition. He was acquainted with El Greco, Velasquez, Goya, etc.
What is the role, if any, of parents and schools in inculcating the love of art? My interest in this question was piqued by a recent inquiry about the prospective purchase of a Picasso print. Nothing extraordinary there, except for the fact that the voice of my conversant resembled that of a child. Turns out that she was a high school student in a public school in Seattle. She explained that the school’s junior class wished to purchase a print by Picasso and donate it to the school. I was also impressed by the upbringing of the friend I mentioned above, the one who would still collect only prints even if money were no object. His father, who had started