ideas on how to avoid Giclee print scams?

Discussion in 'Art' started by TT Antique, Nov 13, 2017.

  1. TT Antique

    TT Antique Active Member

    Hi All
    Does anyone have field tested ideas on how to beat the Giclee print scams that perfectly simulate real paintings on canvas and paper? Even auction houses have been fooled at times. Unlike the older photo mechanical and offset lithograph prints as well as digital prints like xerox and laser printing , the modern Giclee do not have the multi color dot pattern under magnification.Also false brush strokes would be added by hand after printing to simulate textures. Hence how do we detect such scams? any ideas?
    Christmasjoy and judy like this.
  2. Bev aka thelmasstuff

    Bev aka thelmasstuff Well-Known Member

    I had a couple of giclee prints made of one of my pictures and the couple who bought one of them insisted it was the original even though I was standing there telling them it was a giclee and it was a fraction of the cost of the original. I have no advice for you.
    judy, kyratango and Christmasjoy like this.
  3. moreotherstuff

    moreotherstuff Izorizent

    It's my understanding that Giclees are inkjet prints. It's going to be very difficult to tell, especially if the painting technique is essentially featureless, as is true of things like watercolors and even academy oils of the mid-19th C.

    Experience and hands-on examination are your best bets. A knowledge of paper, canvas, stretcher styles, panels... all would help, but a lot of things get re-lined, re-mounted, re-stretched.

    I don't think you could tell from online images. If you're buying online, you have to trust the dealer. Make sure they have a solid return policy.

    I too have heard stories of people paying high prices for acknowledged prints just because they thought they knew better.
    judy and kyratango like this.
  4. komokwa

    komokwa The Truth is out there...!

    ever since I saw my 1st Giclee...........I knew the process would muddy the water.
    judy likes this.
  5. TT Antique

    TT Antique Active Member

    thanks all!...I guess if one has a disposable chunk of money for paintings he may as well pay for an expert during the purchase or buy from a very known dealer ..but for many of us who just pick paintings here and there for small bargains the issue would be different...of-course if one takes the painting at home there could be ways to determine using black-light , taking out the canvas and checking at the edges whether there is random paint splatter etc..but none of these are applicable for on the spot purchase like thrift or flea market or even antique fairs and other knowledge of tell tale signs are more helpful ,the kind that you can determine with the loupe or by touching. The scams have advanced to the point that they put false brush strokes on the surface of oil paintings. Some try to see the plausibility of the brush strokes to determine authenticity.But if it is done by artistic hand that too would quite deceptive.As moreotherstuff pointed checking physical issues like canvas and stretcher is not conclusive as real antique arts could be found in modern stretchers and frames and realigned..Hence unlike the former print scams ,in the Giclee age giving a relatively accurate judgment on the spot ,is going to be a tough issue in the days to come..But if anyone has a secret knowledge, please pop in..:)
  6. moreotherstuff

    moreotherstuff Izorizent

    I knew a guy who bought a painting at a church rummage sale. This was a knowledgeable guy. It was an Orientalist painting and he bought it for less than $20. A big score: tens of thousands of dollars. He took it to a big auction house and they were excited about it... until they took it apart. A giclee print. Still, it was a very good print, a very convincing print, with real decorative value. They put it into a household items auction, clearly identified as a giclee print, with a value of a couple hundred dollars. It sold for more than $5000. What is there to say?

    Around here, there's very little in thrift stores priced for hundreds of dollars. I've never seen a print or painting priced that high. The really good reproductions and posters can still have value and can be bought cheap, but I wouldn't recommend them for online. If you are in a Bricks and Mortar sales venue, give it a try.
  7. TT Antique

    TT Antique Active Member

    that is quite a story! You are right online purchase is not recommended in such cases...on brick and mortar maybe taking a picture and checking it online if there were similar items in the past may save some disappointments in not being fooled it is a genuine stuff...but buying them as prints for decorative value is also worth considering if the good ones could potentially bring profit as the amazing story you brought.
  8. lloyd249

    lloyd249 it's not hoarding if it's valuable

    very interesting indeed , i have never heard of giclee before this , thank you .
  9. TT Antique

    TT Antique Active Member

    Giclee is sort of an advanced inkjet printing..whilst the older traditional inkjet printers (that include home inkjet printers) use 4 color dye-based printing , the professional recent Giclee inkjet use up to 12-Colour pigment-based inks which reproduce perfectly. Furthermore Giclee use large format printers. I think I read somewhere (but I am not sure) the older inkjet prints may still show some kind of dots similar to offset litho prints. But professional Giclee inkjet prints are very fine and detailed with no such dot pattern. Hence dot pattern based criteria to check for repros fails for the illusive Giclee prints requiring other methods if any ...
    lloyd249 and Danno like this.
  10. lloyd249

    lloyd249 it's not hoarding if it's valuable

    i went to youtube and looked it up very interesting , have to keep an eye(loop) open for them . i think i may have seen them but didn't know what i was looking at, but knew it couldn't be real ,but then i forget to look them up lol .
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
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