A Buyer’s Guide To Patrick Caulfield

Written by - Isabella de Souza
Interior view of a kitchen with pink cupboards, blue counter, brown chairs, and a table with a white checkered tablecloth featuring pie slices on a plate. Unfinished edges reveal the brown canvas material.Image © Christie's / Unfinished Painting © Patrick Caulfield 1978
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Patrick Caulfield, a Modern British artist, is renowned for his distinct comic book-esque graphic style. His artistic approach encompassed both resistance and embrace of abstraction. By juxtaposing vivid colour blocks with bold black sinuous lines, Caulfield infused everyday objects and scenes with vitality, effectively transforming colours into tangible entities. His work showcases clear influences from Pop Art, reflecting his influence to the movement and in the works of subsequent artists.

Who is Patrick Caulfield?

Patrick Caulfield (1936-2005) was a British artist who emerged in London during the first half of the 1960s. Although he is often associated with pop art due to his graphic use of mass-produced everyday objects in bold and vibrant hues, he distanced himself from the principal characteristics of the movement and considered himself to be more of a “formal’’ artist. Having studied at the Chelsea School of Art and the Royal Academy Arts, he was part of an innovative generation of artists and worked alongside renowned British artist, David Hockney.

Caulfield's artistic style emphasises flatness through solid colours encased in thick black lines, which creates simplistic forms. He often rendered quotidian and inscrutable subjects as wider representations of the human experience, simultaneously heightening objects’ presence and modifying their meaning. During his career, Caulfield was awarded numerous prizes and honours, including the Prix des Jeunes Artistes by the 1965 Biennale de Paris and also received the esteemed nomination for The Turner Prize in 1987. Additionally, he was named Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1996.

“I like very structured painting. I simply try to make a logical, a seemingly logical, space that could exist.’’
Patrick Caulfield
A black and white photographic image of artist Patrick Caulfield, standing in front of several of his works in his studio.Image © Sotheby’s © Patrick Caulfield 2006

Patrick Caulfield’s Influence on Contemporary Art

Patrick Caulfield’s distinct interplay between Minimalism, Abstraction and Pop Art significantly influenced the trajectory of art and inspired artists within and beyond the 20th century. His ability to create powerful and engaging images through the simplification of form, the use of flat colour fields and the incorporation of everyday subject matter opened up new prospects for artistic expression.

Conceptual-contemporary artists, Michael Craig-Martin, known for having fostered the development and careers of many of the Young British Artist’s, was just one figure influenced by Michael Craig-Martin’s use of solid colour and flat lines to define everyday objects within his work. Contemporary artist Julian Opie is also strongly influenced by Caulfield’s reductive style, simplified forms and use of flat colours that draw clear parallels with Caulfield’s work. Opie’s focus on the fundamental essence and intrinsic features of his subjects within everyday scenes are reminiscent of Caulfield’s point of view, underscoring the enduring influence of his style.

By pushing the boundaries of abstraction in his artwork, Caulfield redefined its potential demonstrating its ability to influence representation. His impact extends beyond individual artists and into the broader artistic landscape solidifying his legacy as a central figure in 20th century art history as the convergence of artistic styles becomes more evident within the works of post-war artists.

Why Invest in Patrick Caulfield?

Patrick Caulfield’s print works are a significant contribution to his body of work and are sought after on the global art market. Relatively more affordable compared to his original paintings, they are an accessible alternative to investing in artworks. Caulfield’s influence within the art historical cannon is evidenced through his impressive exhibition history and work’s inclusion in renowned institutions, such as the Tate Museums collections, factors that contribute to the breadth of his works value. Historically, the prints market has proven more resilient than other passion asset categories, especially during times of economic uncertainty. As a result, a growing number of collectors are beginning to acquire prints and multiples given their potential for long-term growth as an investment in alternative-asset classes.

Tips for Building a Patrick Caulfield Print Collection

Building an art collection can be a challenging, yet enjoyable and rewarding experience. When investing in Patrick Caulfield prints, it is important to consider the themes and motifs that interest you. Some buyers opt to concentrate their acquisitions on a specific subject matter, while others prefer to diversify their collection by investing in a broader selection of artworks spanning multiple years. Collectors tend to gravitate towards artworks that either embody the artist's early developmental stage or showcase their fully matured style, as these prices tend to command the highest prices in the market.

As your collection grows, you may also want to consider working with an art portfolio management service to help you keep track and maintain your collection. Professional services, such as MyArtBroker's MyPortfolio platform can help to make informed decisions about future purchases. MyPortfolio is the only print market index in the world, which will track the value of works in your collection and store that information in one secure digital space. Our platform is an easy-to-use collections management tool that helps you stay informed on market fluctuations which is used to track and analyse your collections value. Read more about our service in our comprehensive guide.

A screenshot of the landing page of MyArtBroker’s platform MyPortfolio, depicting the values of Banksy’s artwork and fluctuations in the art market.MyPortfolio © MyArtBroker 2023

How to Determine the Value of Patrick Caulfield Prints & Editions

The value of Patrick Caulfield prints can vary greatly depending on several factors such as the work’s rarity in the market, the edition size, the print’s condition, and the desirability of the subject matter. These factors, including current market trends, provenance, exhibition history, and supported documentation determine the value of the work.

Unless you are confident in your own expertise, it is suggested to seek assistance from specialists within the field. MyArtBroker's team of specialists are always happy and available to speak with you about your collection or works that you are looking to acquire. Get in touch with us today and meet our friendly team.

What are some of Patrick Caulfield’s Most Popular Prints?

Patrick Caulfield’s prints span several decades and are a visual testament to his evolution as an artist. His print works are characterised by their colourful aesthetic overlaid with distinctive bold lines and forms. Featuring simple depictions of recognisable objects, his works address themes of solitude and stillness, which reach a global audience by commentating and the breadth of the human experience. Some notable examples include:

  1. Les Demoiselles d’Avignon vues de derrière: Created in 1999 this work addresses the wider art historical discourse through humorous elements. This work references a rear view of the subjects in Picasso’s renowned work, Demoiselles d’Avignon. This work is interpreted as a visual pun to the printing process, which reverses the original design, and simultaneously underscores Caulfield's preoccupation with positioning himself among the great modern masters in art history.
  2. Coloured Still Life: Dating from 1967, this work serves as one of Caulfield’s most celebrated pieces as it effortlessly encapsulates his artistic oeuvre - two-dimensional everyday household objects featuring vibrant colours and bold lines. There is an absence of depth imbuing a minimalist aesthetic, yet rich in colour, as Caulfield preferred.
  3. Some Poems of Jules Laforgue series: This series from 1973 consists of 22 prints intended for a publication of Jules Laforgue’s poetry. Rather than illustrating the text, Caulfield chose to craft artworks that engage in dialogue, evoking a heightened emotional impact.

How to Authenticate Patrick Caulfield Prints & Editions

When purchasing a Patrick Caulfield print, as with any artwork, it is crucial to determine authenticity. Caulfield hand-signed and numbered all his screenprints which are indicators of authenticity. When purchasing a work you should also be sure to receive a certificate of authenticity (COA).

While all Caulfield prints will come signed and numbered, not all artists practiced this with their works. COA's can also be forged. Not knowing what to look for when acquiring authentic prints can be challenging and it is highly suggested to purchase from a reputable art dealer, auction house or accredited digital platform such as MyArtBroker. The specialists who work in these facilities have specialised knowledge and years of experience to carry out the necessary due diligence to authenticate and sell works from historically significant artists.

How to Check the Condition of Patrick Caulfield Prints

When purchasing Patrick Caulfield prints, it is important to examine its condition carefully. You should inspect for signs of damage, including tears, undulation, and discolouration before purchasing. Examine the material closely to ensure it is in good condition and has not been affected by moisture or sunlight and if possible, ask to see the print out of its frame. If you have uncertainties, it is advisable to seek a condition report from a certified professional.

Despite even the best preservation efforts, prints are fragile and susceptible to damage. Read our guide on maintenance and restoration solutions for your print. Carrying out periodical assessments with professional conservators who have the training and expertise to identify potential issues is also reccommended. Promptly addressing any signs of wear or damage to prevent deterioration will help to preserve the works value.

Where Can I Buy A Patrick Caulfield Print in 2023?

There are several options available for acquiring Patrick Caulfield prints, including galleries, auction houses, art fairs and online marketplaces. Certain online platforms may allow you to buy directly from a private collector at a lower price range. However, purchasing privately without the assistance of an intermediary increases the risk of purchasing forgeries or encountering art scams. Ensuring that you are purchasing from a reputable source, like MyArtBroker, and understanding buying terms is the only way to eliminate inherent risks.

For centuries, auction houses have served as a conventional and reliable avenue for acquiring blue-chip prints and other artworks. Their specialists will determine authenticity of the work by researching provenance and will only include quality works within their sales. However, if considering purchasing via auction you must research sale dates. Each sale is specially curated and preprogrammed to specific dates and auction cycles. Furthermore, due to the dynamic nature of auction sales, both selling and buying prices are subject to fluctuation, implying that the artwork you intended to purchase within a specific price range may ultimately sell for several times the estimated range during the bidding process. And lastly, auction houses typically apply supplementary fees to successful sales, which can amount to an additional 27% of the final bidding price.

MyArtBroker stands out as we integrate the competitive elements of both online and auction purchases. Our platform provides the convenience of online buying while instilling confidence though expert due diligence and services equivalent to those offered by auction houses. However, unlike an auction house our dedicated team works closely with you, addressing queries and managing all aspects of your purchase, including sourcing and shipping. Our comprehensive approach ensures that you receive the most favourable terms and have peace of mind throughout the transaction.

To find out more about our approach read our recent article detailing the differing aspects of online sales and auction sales, along with other buying guides at Edition Magazine.

Graphic depiction of a half-filled wine glass alongside an empty white plate on a black-and-white checkered tablecloth.Image © Christie's / Glass & Plate, Black & White Checks © Patrick Caulfield 1972

Why Use MyArtBroker to Find Your First Patrick Caulfield?

A Dedicated Broker

MyArtBroker is a specialist art brokerage service that provides guidance on building a collection and helps you to discover prints from trusted sources. When working with MyArtBroker, and our large network of collectors looking to buy and sell art, you will be assigned your own personal broker who will work with you to find the piece you are looking for at the price you are willing to pay. Our experts will facilitate condition checks and have to expertise to authenticate artworks so that you can have confidence when buying. We also coordinate shipping and arrange delivery, so that it is one less thing for you to worry about.

Our Network

Our global network consists of over 30,000 collectors buying and selling works daily on our Trading Floor, which gives you access to our market data in real-time. We also work closely with global collectors, galleries and independent experts to ensure we only offer authentic Patrick Caulfield works in excellent condition. Our website has 85,000+ monthly visitors, and we keep them up-to-date with new works, auction results and news which you can access for free at Edition Magazine.

MyArtBroker has access to a worldwide network of collectors who sell Caulfield artworks, so get in touch with us today if you are interested in acquiring a Caulfield print to add to your collection and we will guide you through the process.

Collecting Patrick Caulfield Prints with MyArtBroker

At MyArtBroker, our goal is to simplify the process of purchasing artworks. By providing you with real-time market data, we offer blue-chip market transparency at an unmatched level. We also offer a range of services that are helpful for collectors at all levels, including valuations and portfolio management via MyPortfolio. Working with MyArtBroker, you can be confident that you are purchasing high-quality and authentic artworks.

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