What is graph?

At Arthuis you are at the right address for graphic art. But what exactly is graph and what should you pay attention to when buying it? We've listed the most important facts for you.


Graphics is the collective name for all kinds of art that is made using printing techniques, also known as printmaking. The images created by the printing technique are called prints, or in English "prints", or simply prints. Because prints/prints are made using printing techniques, it is possible to repeat the printing process and always reproduce the same image. Because of the reproducibility of the artwork, the value of prints is sometimes wrongly underestimated, but fortunately there are a few features that can prevent this.


One of the important factors in estimating the value of a print is the print run, also known as edition. The circulation is the total number of prints with the same image. The artist determines how often the printing process is repeated and how large the print run will be. This is very important, because the print run can be an important factor in determining the value of the artwork: the smaller the print run, the fewer prints, and the more valuable the print. The artist often numbers the limited edition prints in the lower left corner. This often looks like this:

This is the 161st numbered print of an edition of 300. The value of a print numbered 80/300 often does not differ from a print numbered 20/100 or 5/100. But when an artist makes an edition of, for example, 30 prints, they are rarer and therefore worth more than when the artist makes an edition of 300.


The edition is usually indicated on the artwork. However, the actual print run is usually larger than this number, because artists often make proofs first in addition to the regular prints. These proofs do not count in the print run. Sometimes the artist is still experimenting to determine what he/she likes best and what works best. These proofs are often unique prints that differ from the print run, making them more valuable. These proofs are called "trial proofs" and are marked 'TP'.

Some prints bear the letters ' EP' (Épeuve d'Artiste) or ' AP ' (Artist Proof). This concerns a proof that is exactly the same as the numbered prints in the edition. These proofs have exactly the same quality but are not included in the print run. The number of APs cannot exceed 10% of the print run. Due to the limited supply, these are usually priced slightly higher than other prints.

Artist Proof

In addition to the artist and signature, there is quite a bit to consider when the value of a work of art is determined. The technique with which the print is made can also play a major role. Read more about screen prints, lithographs, etchings and woodcuts here.