Author Topic: Artist proofs & Seconds  (Read 6113 times)

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Offline Liz

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« on: July 08, 2006, 12:41:18 AM »
1. What is done with artists proofs?
2. Are seconds sold in a retail environment?


Thanks!
Liz
Liz


Offline Leni

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2006, 11:40:20 AM »
I believe some companies do sell off seconds to the public.  I know Caithness do.  (You often see them on ebay, where people seem to think being signed CIIG is a good thing, not realising it means a Caithness 'second'  :roll: ) Whether Glass Eye do the same, I don't know.  

An 'Artist's Proof' I would think is a different matter, and although I have heard somewhere that Caithness also used to mark these as CIIG, I don't know if that's true.  I think Artist's Proof weights are more likely to have come out of a studio 'via the back door' if you take my meaning!
Leni


Offline KevinH

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2006, 10:58:19 PM »
Liz, I would have responded to your "newbie" questions earlier but got bogged down with other things, then completely forgot about this message.

I think Leni's comments are on the right lines.

When I used the term "artist's proof", I was thinking about items that were specifically made to test a design and which could then have prompted some changes for the actual production output. In which case, parts of the "proof" may not have been as perfect as desired and also the finishing (of the base, for example) may not have been completed to usual standards. In some cases, such "proofs" could have been kept by the maker, held in the company stock room or even simply chucked out. They might also have been put into the market place by intention, or otherwise.

But what each "proof maker" in each company actually does with them probably differs every time one is made.

Another aspect of this is that occasionally weights can be found with a "1/1" mark, meaning "No 1 of an edition of 1", or just "a one off". If there was no follow up as a production run, then could such a one off be called a "proof"? Maybe it could, and maybe it was just that, but with a decision that something about the design was not suitable for progression.

Well, those are just thoughts off the top of my head. The truth is, I don't actually know the answer to the question. :D
KevinH


Offline Liz

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2006, 03:27:30 AM »
Thanks Leni, KevH !  :D

Thanks again everyone, hopefully someday I'll have enough knowledge to answer questions instead of asking them! And I will have all of you to thank for the guidance!  :D

Liz
Liz


Offline Frank

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2006, 06:05:37 AM »
Caithness also sell seconds through their factory shop and these are often sold on eBay and can fetch substantial sums, the have a CIIG mark.

Paul Ysart never sold seconds, they were destroyed but he was always on rocky financial ground. When you consider the cost of running a studio with todays energy prices it is not surprising that seconds need to be sold to make ends meet. To sell or not sell seconds is thus a commercial issue and not a moral one.

Vasart weights were deliberately making for the gift trade and not connoisseurs, mostly. Indeed many glassworkers need to produce bread and butter work in order to afford to produce their expensive art pieces.
Frank A.
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Offline Liz

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2006, 02:04:35 PM »
Now, I'm glad I asked again, the responses were worth the wait! I have certainly learned alot from this, thanks all!!

Thanks for the education! (To whom do I send the tuition check???  )

Liz
Liz


Offline Angela B

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A few thoughts on this
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2006, 02:13:16 PM »
I'd like to add a few thoughts on this topic. If you search the www you can find a range of US paperweight artists have produced "Artist proof" paperweights and signed them either "Artist Proof" or just AP. For example a Correia Art Glass Tropical Fish paperweight marked ARTIST PROOF (from 1989); Jim Donofrio paperweight of  wizard faces and flowers signed Jim Donofrio 02 artist proof; Rick Ayotte 2001 artist proof hummingbird and orchid miniature paperweight; Cathie Richardson Green Octopus paperweight identified by the seller as an artist's proof; and a 1976 Paul J. Stankard Artist's Proof Mixed Bouquet Paperweight  - an experimental bouquet paperweight signed by Paul J. Stankard and marked "AP1 23876." In fact there is a book called "Paul Joseph Stankard: The First Decade" which is a catalogue of artist proof paperweights by Stankard in the collection of the Wheaton Museum of Glass.

What is an "artist proof" paperweight.  It is the first of a design produced by an artist and intended for use as a model for a series or as a test for a design to be used again in other weights. By its nature, the original artists proof is unique even though the design is then reproduced as a series. I don't think there is any reason to think it is less than perfect or damaged or not finished off completely. Some may be, but there is no reason to expect this. The US "artist proof" paperweights mentioned above sold for thousands of dollars. Some artists may choose to leave their "artist proof" paperweights unfinished but I do not think that is the norm.

A few months ago there were several "artist proof" paperweights from Caithness Glass which were offered for sale on ebay.  Unfortunately I did not manage to buy one. They each had documentation that they were original artists proofs and/or experimental designs. Caithness Glass have been taken over a number of times in recent years, and ever since they became part of the same organisation as Edinburgh Crystal, all kinds of items have been put up for sale that were never sold to the public before. I have bought items which the sales staff told me "We weren't allowed to sell these before, but now it seems that everything is being cleared out of the stock room". So it did not surprise me to see artists proof paperweights and experimental designs coming out of Caithness Glass.

The late Colin Terris (Caithness chief designer for many many years) described the making of the first model for a series of paperweights. Once the design was accepted, that artists proof was then the model for the whole series, and any paperweights which were too large or too small or where the design was not close enough to the original model, were rejected and if they were nevertheless good paperweights, they were etched CIIG and sold as seconds only from the Caithness shop (not via their official retail outlets). These paperweights often turn up on ebay, as Frank has pointed out. The point of this story is that Caithness in particular must have had literally hundreds of artists proof paperweights. I wonder what has happened to them. The Caithness exhibition of their paperweights was supposed to contain number one of each series, but over the years some of those first editions have crept out into the hands of collectors. They were the first of each series; they were not artists proofs.

Paperweights that are "one-of-a-kind" or marked 1/1 are something different again. Sometimes an artist is asked to produce a special paperweight as a commission, sometimes an artist makes a one-off paperweight as a gift or to celebrate something special, and sometimes they just decide not to make any more. These are not artists proofs because they were not the model for a series or for later production.

An experimental design is something different again. It may or may not have led to a series of similar weights being made. But the implication is that it did not. It was just an experiment.

Paperweights sometimes turn up marked "Sample". One US dealer assumed that this meant they were artists proofs, but that is unlikely. A sample would normally be produced to show the kind of work available, and there is no reason to think there wouldn't be dozens or even hundreds of such samples produced.

And finally, a word about "seconds".  Some artists choose to destroy any piece that they do not think is up to their normal standard (Paul Ysart became famous for this). Some artists sell such pieces without their signature, refusing to sign anything that is not up to standard.  And some outfits, like Caithness Glass, identify the second quality output with an indelible mark and sell it at a discount. I am not absolutely certain that current "seconds" sold by Caithness Glass are all so clearly marked as they used to be. But in every case, the item sold is still a piece of art made by an artist which may appeal to some people for the very  features that caused its rejection.
There is a difference between a "second" which is essentially a piece which does not measure up to standard,  and a lesser quality item which was produced for a different market.
Many artists employ a different form of signature for their best pieces to distinguish them from more run-of-the-mill output. And many European artists have different grades of work. Their very top pieces are often referred to as exhibition pieces; then there are collectors' pieces; possibly a grade below that for high class gifts; and then a range of designs intended for sale in tourist outlets and gift shops. The time spent by the artist will vary with the intended designation, and the quality and price will reflect this. It is up to the buyer to judge the quality of  the item they are offered and to decide if it is worth the price asked. And most dealers will accept return of a paperweight that the buyer is unhappy with.
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Offline Angela B

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The rest of this thread
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2006, 02:26:24 PM »
Quote
Some posts reinstated here that got accidentally split from this thread


Quote from: "CRAIG DEACONS"
Joined: 26 Jan 2006
Posts: 4
Location: SCOTLAND
   
Posted: 12 Jul 2006 12:30 am    

Regarding my production of paperweights you will be aware that we have a small group of 7 glass workers the production falls into 3 categories:

1-Top of the market averaging 15 per week
2-middle market averaging 18 per week
3-millifiori market averaging 30 per week

Sincerely yours
John Deacons
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CRAIG DEACONS




Quote from: "Lustrousstone"
Joined: 01 Feb 2005
Posts: 545
Location: Warrington, UK
   
Posted: 12 Jul 2006 12:53 am    

I have very few paperweights, mostly Chinese Shocked , and an awful lot of early to mid 20th century/late 19th century glass, mostly factory made but one thing I love about it all is the character that low levels of mechanisation, i.e., much hand involvement gives it. Should creativity and passion be stifled because machine-made perfection hasn't been achieved yet? I don't think so
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From: Angela Bowey
My New Zealand Glass book - http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00BT0ND3Q
London Lampworkers book on Amazon.co.uk - http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00BHRQS9W
Bagley Glass book - http://www.glass-time.com/orderbagleyglassbook.html
http://www.glassencyclopedia.com/ - the Glass Encyclopedia
http://www.glass.co.nz/ - the Glass Museum


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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2006, 08:23:08 AM »
Originally, this topic contained inflammatory statements and angry responses that resulted in this thread being temporarily moved into the committee forum, where after careful review and removal of the inflammatory comments it is now felt that it provides a useful response to the original question.

We remind our membership that we ask in our guidelines that all discussion be respectful. Where comments are made that are found unsettling, please do not attack the poster - this only raises temperatures and the serious discussion is forgotten. It is better if you are offended by any comment, to add a reply addressed to the GMB committee expressing your concern. Be assured that in all such cases that a rapid review will take place.
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Offline Liz

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Artist proofs & Seconds
« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2006, 11:25:27 PM »
Angela,

  Thank you so very much for your very informative answer to my questions! I sincerely appreciate the response and hope that others found it as interesting as I did!!   :D

Liz
Liz

 

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