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ISO: What is considered a print today?

From Facebook:

I am Mahmoud a fine arts student from egypt working on my master degree in the field of printmaking, i have a few academic questions can someone help? My questions are :

A- has any organization or academic institutions made manifesto that define the art print and original print by stating the guidelines and it’s regulations, other than the print council of America and their publication ( what is an original print) in 1961?? Especially now days due to the overlapping of arts and media with printmaking ??

B-in current days mixing other art tradition and media with art prints, is it considered a print or not?? do we need to add to the regulations that defines an original print by today standards??

C-Experimenting lead to inventing printmaking, is there experimental printmaking or new form of prints that has been created in now a days that still not recognized as a print but should have because it has many of the characteristics of a print ?? if there can you tell me examples ?


  1. Paul Moxon, Website Editor 28 May, 2020 at 4:23 pm

    These questions are essentially outside the concern of printing and printing history as opposed to printmaking.

    Keep in mind that printing (letterpress and later offset lithography) generally concerns mass production (newspapers, books, commercial) but also refers to limited fine press publishing. The study of its history is about its output but also its processes, materials, people (innovators), and companies.

    Manifestos or philosophies of printing are few. Historically, printing fraternities/guilds/associations have chiefly concerned themselves with standards of technical quality. Design, while admired, was secondary and to my knowledge, only in the late 19th century did design organizations come into being.

    Today, experimental letterpress printers outside of academia don’t concern themselves with regulations and definitions in the way printmakers do. Letterpress is a relief process from assembling commercially produced elements (e.g. type and illustrations) while relief printing is differentiated as maker-made printing surfaces (woodcuts and linocuts, etc.)

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