Picasso Etching, ca. 1956

Value (2013) | $1,500 Retail

I brought in a line etching by Picasso. I'm not sure exactly whether this is a restrike after he died. I've had it since the '70s. I acquired it from a gallery in Baltimore. I spent, I think, if I remember right, somewhere around $135, $125, $135.

It's an etching by Picasso. You have Picasso's signature, which is actually an etched signature in the plate, as well as the date here, 1956. All that's in reverse because he would have written that correctly, free-hand, on the etching plate, and then it would print in reverse. It's classic 1950s Picasso look. Now, the big question here is when was this printed, what's the edition? Picasso would have printed from this plate, or his printers would have printed this from this plate, in 1956 in Paris. And he would have hand-signed them and numbered them. Typically, his editions were between 50 and 150. This Picasso is an etching that was published by the Collector's Guild. And the Collector's Guild was an outfit that was in operation in America in the 1960s, primarily. And they were sort of like a book-of-the-month club. After the artist had used the plates and made their edition, the Collector's Guild in America would buy the plate and the rights to print from that plate.


And they would basically make as many impressions as they could sell. And this is something that we see quite a bit of on Antiques Roadshow. But, that being said, they are by prominent artists, and they are from the original plates. So therefore, this is a genuine original Picasso etching. It's just not done by Picasso anymore. It's sort of out of his hands, if you will. It would be safe to say that you have something in the retail neighborhood of around $1,500.


So it's definitely appreciated.

Well, I guess it has, hasn't it?

Appraisal Details

Swann Auction Galleries
New York, NY
Appraised value (2013)
$1,500 Retail
Rapid City, SD (July 14, 2012)

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