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Lithography Print for Sale

Lithography is a printing technique which allows for the creation and reproduction of a design drawn in ink or in pencil on a stone (often limestone), using a press. The technique first appeared at the end of the 18th century in Germany and quickly became popular across Europe throughout the 19th century. Although the supports it uses and the way it is used have considerably changed, it is still a commonly used process today. Lithography uses a chemical process which is based on the immiscibility of water and oil. The image is drawn directly onto the stone slate using ink or a wax pencil or 'transferred' using transfer paper. The limestone is then moistened and covered with a greasy ink. As the ink is hydrophobic, it only adheres to the lines of the drawing and is repelled by the wet areas. Paper is then applied to the stone slate and pressed.

Over time, this technique was adapted to new supports other than stone, such as zinc and aluminium. In the 19th century in particular, lithography was used for a whole host of different purposes. In newspaper publishing, its quick production rate made it a popular choice for printing news illustrations, where being the first to publish a new story is still a top priority. Lithography is also used for more commercial purposes (stickers, printing sheet music) as well as an artistic form of expression.

We are of course most interested in looking at how this technique has been used artistically. It has two main functions. The first is as an artistic medium; artists like Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec worked with lithography to create several copies of an original piece, whereas other artists use it as a way of copying their works. Highly fashionable at the time, we can still see numerous Art Nouveau and Art Deco inspired lithographs today.

Lithography can produce typographic and artistic creations in a short space of time. It allows artists to reproduce original drawings very easily. It also gives the artist the opportunity to explore an endless number of creative possibilities and explore an infinite array of styles.

In the 20th century, lithography was commonly used to create exhibition posters and by-products which were often created by the artists themselves. Miro and Picasso for example created a large number of posters using this technique.

Today, only artistic lithography remains. In a similar way to photography or engraving, lithographs come in multiple examples. The market value varies depending on the artist's popularity and the quality of the print, but also depending on the number of copies that exist. It is important for the buyer to know the number attributed to the lithograph and the total number of copies made, as detailed in the 'certificate of authenticity' which helps to prevent fraudulent copies.

When looking through Artsper, you will find lithographs from some of the 20th century's biggest names, including (Niki de Saint Phalle, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Jean Cocteau, Victor Vasarely, Salvador Dali, Zao Wou-Ki...) but also from famous contemporary artists such as Hervé Télémaque, Yan Pein Ming and many others. All of the lithographs sold by Artsper have been carefully chosen. Artsper only selects works which come from limited editions with a maximum of 300 examples or which have been signed by the artist.

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JR au Louvre et le Secret de la Grande Pyramide, JR

JR au Louvre et le Secret de la Grande Pyramide

JR

Print - 100 x 56 cm

€1,200

Self Portrait (SF-050), Sam Francis

Self Portrait (SF-050)

Sam Francis

Print - 104.1 x 74.9 x 0.3 cm

€1,556

Bleue 1977 Blue, Moon Shin

Bleue 1977 Blue

Moon Shin

Print - 75 x 50 x 0.3 cm

€1,950

Orson Welles, Erró

Orson Welles

Erró

Print - 60 x 81 cm

€890

Green Nude with Skirt and White Snake, Walasse Ting

Green Nude with Skirt and White Snake

Walasse Ting

Print - 45.7 x 61 cm

€1,556

Black Grid, Yellow Circles, Red and Blue Arcs, Sol LeWitt

Black Grid, Yellow Circles, Red and Blue Arcs

Sol LeWitt

Print - 39 x 38 x 0.1 cm

€1,100

Bibliothèque nationale, Max Ernst

Bibliothèque nationale

Max Ernst

Print - 52 x 43 cm

€950

La Mère & la Fille / Mother and Daughter - 1913, Egon Schiele

La Mère & la Fille / Mother and Daughter - 1913

Egon Schiele

Print - 80 x 58 cm

€1,800

Lasting (Blue Edition), ZES

Lasting (Blue Edition)

ZES

Print - 90 x 77 cm

€1,129

Reclining figure architectural background IV, Henry Moore

Reclining figure architectural background IV

Henry Moore

Print - 57.2 x 77.5 cm

€1,800

Norma Jeane, Tilt

Norma Jeane

Tilt

Print - 68.5 x 68.5 cm

€1,129

Coffret Figure, Gregos

Coffret Figure

Gregos

Print - 34.5 x 27.5 cm

€1,600

Triomphe De La République, Brusk (DMV)

Triomphe De La République

Brusk (DMV)

Print - 128 x 76 x 0.1 cm

€850

American Dance Festival, Alex Katz

American Dance Festival

Alex Katz

Print - 149.9 x 88.9 cm

€1,245

Manet’s Olympia, Mel Ramos

Manet’s Olympia

Mel Ramos

Print - 50.8 x 67.3 cm

€4,151

Drift, Koak

Drift

Koak

Print - 49.5 x 40.5 cm

€1,000

Réalité peinte d'un joueur de football / Painterly Realism of a Football Player - 1915, Kasimir Malevitch

Réalité peinte d'un joueur de football / Painterly Realism of a Football Player - 1915

Kasimir Malevitch

Print - 90 x 61.5 cm

€990

Need some help ?

How are lithography prints made?

Lithography prints are made by drawing an image onto the printing surface, usually a smooth stone or metal plate, with materials such as litho crayons or specialized oily pencils. The artwork is then printed onto a material of choice. 

What is the difference between a lithograph and a print?

A lithograph is a type of print. Printing encompasses various different methods, whereas lithography refers to the specific process of using a stone or metal surface and oil-based inks to create a final printed work.

What is lithography used for?

Lithography is used to print fine artworks, as well as other printed media such as text.