What is an edition?
An edition is a set of identical objects that an artist conceives of and produces as an original artwork. Fine art photographs are likely a familiar example. Printed photos are not merely reproductions of an original artwork; they are the artwork themselves and they exist in the form of multiple, identical prints.
Editions are commonly associated with fine art printmaking, which encompasses a variety of processes including silkscreen, lithography, woodblock, and etching. Some other art-making techniques, like photography and bronze casting, also yield multiple identical artworks and are commonly produced in an edition.
What is an edition number?
To authenticate and “edition” each piece, the artist uses a standardized numbering system, which appears in the form of a fraction. You might have noticed John Beech’s Rubber Mat Edition Print is numbered 20/20 in the lower left margin. The denominator of the fraction tells us the artist produced an edition of 20 identical works. The numerator tells us it is the 20th print in the edition.
Typically, this information appears on the front of the artwork, but the artist may inscribe the edition number on the reverse of the sheet. This may be the only option if the image extends to the edges of the sheet.
Make sure to pay atten-tion to the denominator of the edition number: the lower the number, the rarer the print.
Who collects editions?
Editions are considered an egalitarian and more accessible artform. Since editioned artworks are typically less expensive than unique artworks, they are a great place for first-time buyers and new collectors to start. However, editions are also highly sought after by experienced purchasers who collect certain artists’ works.
Why Accession Projects?
While we warmly welcome all clients, Accession Projects is especially excited to assist new collectors and first-time buyers in navigating the oft-confusing acquisition process.
Many galleries do not publicize retail prices, but AP understands price is an important factor in making an informed purchase. Retail prices and artist info can be found by clicking the “More Information” link below each artwork on the website. To make great art more accessible, most pieces in the inaugural selection range from $100–$1,000. We’re also happy to offer interest-free payment plans to help realize acquisitions that may be just out of reach.
High-quality images are available on our site, but in-person viewings can be arranged in accordance with Minnesota state guidelines. AP is also willing to ship an artwork to an interested buyer so the piece can be viewed in person before committing to a purchase.
Founder Aaron Stempien is happy to speak with any art lover to further discuss the works on offer. Please feel free to write us with any questions or to set up a conversation with no obligations to purchase.