Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Never mind the quality, feel the width

When is an artist’s print not a print? Um… when it’s a printed reproduction. Museums exhibiting the current Bill Hammond exhibition are selling two printed reproductions of paintings in the show, including the signature work Jingle Jangle Morning. Should the buyer beware? Well, here are five different definitions delivered in a single sentence on their web site by the publishers of the reproduction, the Christchurch Art Gallery.

“Well, not the actual artwork, perhaps, but the next best thing – an excellent quality reproduction of a favourite painting. The Gallery Shop has an extensive collection of quality reproduction prints. It includes prints of some of the finest works in the Gallery Collection.”

By the time these two printed reproductions arrive on the internet-prints-for-sale-site they have become “art prints”, “fine art prints” and ”reproduction art prints.” announces, “We are very excited to have two Bill Hammond reproduction art prints available at last. They are printed in Christchurch by award winning printers Spectrum Print and the colour fidelity of the prints has been personally checked by the artist.”

Superlatives come at a price. The “quality reproduction prints” from the Christchurch Art Gallery are $55.00 each. For one of the “reproduction art prints” via you’ll have to stump up $79.95.

Image: Digital reproduction of a printed reproduction of a painting by Salvador Cherubini of an early Egyptian stone carving of the god Horus who looks like one of Hammond's bird guys.