“People buy prints and drawings for the same reasons they buy any works of art: for love, for investment, for decoration, for showing off, for the pleasure of collecting something interesting. Original prints, and to a lesser extent drawings, allow one to collect works of many of the greatest artists of history, something no longer possible with paintings or sculpture. You cannot collect Rembrandt paintings today. You can collect Rembrandt drawings only if you are a multimillionaire. But you can collect Rembrandt etchings. They may not be dirt cheap and some may be quite expensive, but they are available. An amount in four figures will buy a good Rembrandt etching; five figures will buy a very fine one.
Posthumous impressions are (and should be) a good deal cheaper. Similarly, you can also buy original Dürers, DAUMIERS, Altdorfers, Ostades, Castigliones, Bouchers, Goyas, Ruysdaels, Fragonards, Manets, Whistlers, Gericaults, Picassos and Pissarros among a host of others, something that would range from horrendously expensive to plainly impossible in paintings.
Original prints and drawings can be bought from a number of different sources: dealers and galleries, auction houses, antique dealers, decorators, estates, flea markets, the Internet and so on. Assuming one has a developing interest, however, the problem is not only where to buy, but what and how. Following is a group of questions that some people have asked us but many more have asked themselves. They are, in any event, questions one should ask.” (Reprinted with kind permission from “How to Buy Drawings and Prints” from C. & J. Goodfriend, Drawings and Prints. ©James Goodfriend 1996.)