Picasso is the poster child of modern art spanning almost the entire 20th century. His innovations with Braque in the early 1900's resulting in analytic and synthetic cubism changed modern art forever.
Constantly seeking to experiment and innovate, he turned to numerous media, pushing them to their technical and aesthetic limits, including printmaking. His breathtaking stone lithography created at the Mourlot in Paris in the mid 1940's, changed the way artists looked at graphic media all over the world (especially the United States), spawning a revival of lithography that lasted for decades.
To own a genuine work created (and especially signed) by Picasso is the envy of many collectors. His oils on canvas are so expensive (and rare) that they only adorn the hallowed walls of the most famous art museums or high end collectors.
What is less well known is that he produced a significant number of original lithographs that were published and signed and readily available on the art market. He also created many high quality printed lithographs and linocuts (many in color) as part of deluxe books, posters and devoted volumes to his printmaking (such as the rare lithographic publications of Picasso's work at the Mourlot in Paris spanning three decades).
While these printed works may not be formally signed they are as valid as any signed work, being created directly on the stone or zinc plate by the hand of the master. Many of these unpublished and unsigned states are a superb historical documentation of his creative thinking at the time. They are in fact the very best window into his creative mind, that is, a visual snap shot of how he approached the work at that moment (including his mistakes and sudden change in creative direction). This is not readily apparent in his other media, including his sculpture, ceramics and oil painting.
The good news for collectors, is these prints are readily available in the art market at affordable prices and are an excellent long term investment. DKH has made available almost all his stone and zinc lithographs that were printed at the Mourlot (including all the unpublished proofs demonstrating his progression on a particular work leading to his signed final edition), In addition, the entire color lithographic posters published by Mourlot (totlwd Art in Posters) as well as both issues of Verve Magazine solely devoted to the work of Picasso are avaialble for review on this site.