American Prints

Influenced by the renewed European interest in etching, American printmakers experienced a significant revival early in the 20th century. Various intaglio techniques, etching being most popular, were used to document the poor social conditions caused by rapid industrial growth in the early part of the century through the 1960s.

Regionalist artists used lithography to create images celebrating the American rural landscape, though beginning in the Jazz Age the technique was increasing used in urban centers for advertising. During the Great Depression, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) funded arts teachers in an effort to continue the arts during this difficult time period in American history.

A new American attitude developed in the 1950s and 1960s, where the relationship between the printmaker and the artist became more collaborative than in typical European ateliers. Robert Blackburn’s Printmaking Workshop in New York also encouraged a collaborative space for artists and printers to exchange ideas and experimentation.


Quick Facts

  • In the 19th century, American artist Winslow Homer began his career as an illustrator specializing in woodcut prints for publications. After he shifted his focus to painting, he often made etchings of his works, keeping his printmaking skills alive and promoting the importance of the medium
  • In 1940, British artist Stanley William Hayter left the instability of wartime Europe to establish a printmaking studio in New York. Called Atelier 17, the studio provided artists a place to experiment with various techniques in a collaborative environment
  • In the 1960s and '70s, American printmaking shifted toward screen printing, as was popular with Andy Warhol, but artists such as David Hockney and Jim Dine kept Intaglio techniques alive

Recommended Items at Auction

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Lot 3 ATTR ANDY WARHOL Signed Prints
Oct 20, 10:00 AM EDT
Lot 3 ATTR ANDY WARHOL Signed Prints
by The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc
Est: $200- $800
$2505 Bids
Ernest Tino Trova, Missouri (1927-2009), Falling Man, screenprint, 22 x 22 inches
Oct 23, 10:00 AM CDT
Ernest Tino Trova, Missouri (1927-2009), Falling Man, screenprint, 22 x 22 inches
by Link Auction Galleries
Est: $100- $200
$752 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 13
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 13
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 6
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 6
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $1,500- $2,000
$8000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 3
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 3
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 2
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 2
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana 1964 Eternal Hexagon
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana 1964 Eternal Hexagon
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $2,000- $3,000
$7500 Bids
Andy Warhol (1928-1987) "$” Castelli NY Original Numbered Lithograph #5/100, Ornate Framed.
Oct 24, 7:00 PM BST
Andy Warhol (1928-1987) "$” Castelli NY Original Numbered Lithograph #5/100, Ornate Framed.
by James Auctioneers London
Est: £400- £500
£4000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 15
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 15
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 14
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 14
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 10
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 10
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 9
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - The American Dream 9
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $800- $1,100
$3000 Bids
Robert Indiana - Black Diamond
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - Black Diamond
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $3,000- $5,000
$1,8000 Bids
Robert Indiana - Autumn (Four Seasons of Hope Silver)
Oct 21, 12:00 PM EDT
Robert Indiana - Autumn (Four Seasons of Hope Silver)
by Dane Fine Art Auctions
Est: $13,000- $18,000
$5,0000 Bids
TOM EVERHART "WATCH DOG NOON" SIGNED/NUMBERED LITHOGRAP
Oct 24, 12:00 PM EDT
TOM EVERHART "WATCH DOG NOON" SIGNED/NUMBERED LITHOGRAP
by Luxury Fine Arts
Est: $1,500- $2,000
$5000 Bids
Harold Krisel, New York (1920-1995), Ochre Horizon, 1961, serigraph, 21 x 13 1/4 inches
Oct 23, 10:00 AM CDT
Harold Krisel, New York (1920-1995), Ochre Horizon, 1961, serigraph, 21 x 13 1/4 inches
by Link Auction Galleries
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids
Charles Hewitt, New York (b. 1946), Yellow Maku, 2010, color woodcut, a.p. ed. 4/12, 20 x 13 inches
Oct 23, 10:00 AM CDT
Charles Hewitt, New York (b. 1946), Yellow Maku, 2010, color woodcut, a.p. ed. 4/12, 20 x 13 inches
by Link Auction Galleries
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids
Werner Drewes, American (1899-1985), Laundry Day, woodcut, ed. A.P., 9 x 12 inches
Oct 23, 10:00 AM CDT
Werner Drewes, American (1899-1985), Laundry Day, woodcut, ed. A.P., 9 x 12 inches
by Link Auction Galleries
Est: $400- $500
$2000 Bids
Peter Max- Original Lithograph "COSMIC SATURN II (Mini)"
Oct 24, 10:00 AM PDT
Peter Max- Original Lithograph "COSMIC SATURN II (Mini)"
by Robinhood Auctions
Est: $1,020- $1,275
$3750 Bids

Sellers Who Sell American Prints


Dane Fine Art Auctions

Dane Fine Art Auctions

Link Auction Galleries

Link Auction Galleries

James Auctioneers London

James Auctioneers London

The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc

The Benefit Shop Foundation Inc