What is a giclée?

Giclées (zhee-CLAY) are about providing affordable art for collectors.  They are, essentially, digital prints of an original artwork.  Giclées, being multiple prints, give the artist more exposure and an opportunity to provide more “popularly priced” art to more art enthusiasts.




In Rembrandt’s time, engravers carefully copied the master’s works by etching metal plates and printed black and white reproductions from them.  This gave artists like Rembrandt a wider audience and more chances to sell the same composition or to have them inserted into books.   Matisse and Picasso sold licenses to make “serigraphs” (silkscreen reproductions) from their work.  In fact, they created work specifically intended to be printed by serigraph or lithograph in limited editions.  Today, the process has kept up with technology.  We can scan, edit and print art with the same basic equipment that our digital cameras and scanners, monitors and ink jet or laser printers do for us at work and at home. Giclée printers are quite large and can print on a variety of papers or canvas.

The resolution (capture of detail in exceptionally fine focus) of the scans made from the original art is of superior quality.  The printers that turn out the art on canvas or paper can produce a print the same size as the original (and larger or smaller, if desired).  The print that is produced is known as a giclée.

The inks used to make the print are archival. A UV spray finishes the print and protects it from damage by sunlight.



The printed giclée artwork is often indistinguishable from the original.  There are telltale signs if one knows how to look.  Some artists do as I do, and sign the giclée near the original signature which is part of the giclée.  Some artists sign and number their prints.  Still others paint directly on the giclées to render them each different from the others.  Other artists sell the prints right off the printer without change.  Ask the artist or gallery from whom you buy how yours was made.  It’s OK. Giclées are not a secret.



Obviously, giclées satisfy both the artist and art collector.  As they say, it’s win-win.



Giclées are a wonderful way to have the art you want at a more affordable price.  In general, the giclées that come direct from the printer cost 1/3 of the painting price.  If you want another "original," I change the giclee by hand painting enhancements over it, making it another original work.  This re-painted giclée is usually 1/2 the cost of the original painting.


If you want to ask about the availability of a giclée, please call me.  786-202-1166 or email.  Thanks for your interest.