Kishore Singh continues to school his readers in the trends and nuances of both the Indian art market and collecting habits around the world in the Business Standard.
What is a print? From the nineteenth century on, artists began to create a clutch of individualised copies in a process that resulted in etchings, lithographs, graphics, woodprints and so on. Each emerged off the plate or block with some infirmities in the print, near enough to the original but satisfactorily different to the observer to be considered original.
The technique was a part of the curriculum at art institutions but because only painting was considered “high” art, printmaking went into decline, unlike in the West where it had both promoters and collectors. Even though artists like Abanindranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose worked partly or wholly in the medium, it failed to become the toast of art salons at the time. India has excellent printmakers devoted exclusively to the medium — Chittaprosad and Haren Das among the masters, Anupam Sud and Pratibha Dakoji in recent times — but in public perception at least, there seems still to be some hesitation in accepting their work as having investment potential.
It is only recently, with prices having consolidated, that art promoters have turned to it as yet another medium. Even dealers have turned to newer technologies, such as serigraphs, the process of silk screening a print in the closest approximation of a painting in its original colours, with the blessings of the artist, who both numbers and signs each such edition, making it a collectible.
Limited Editions for Limited Means (Business Standard)