Giclées are produced from digital scans of existing artwork. Also, since many artists now produce only digtal art, there is no "original" that can be hung on a wall. Giclées solve this problem, creating a whole new vibrant medium for artists.
Giclées can be printed on several types of media, from canvas to watercolor paper to transparent acetates.
Giclées are superior to traditional lithography in many ways.
They are produced directly from a digital file, saving generations of detail-robbing negatives and printing plates.
The colors are brighter, last longer, and Giclées are so high-resolution that they are virtually continuous tone, rather than composed of tiny dots.
The range, or "gamut" of color for Giclées is far beyond that of lithography.
Lithography uses tiny dots of four colors (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) to trick the eye into seeing various hues and shades of color.
Giclées use inkjet technology, but far more sophisticated technology than your desktop printer, with light-fast inks and finer, more numerous print heads.
Giclées originated from proofing systems for lithograph printing presses. It became apparent that the presses were unable to match the quality and color of the Giclée proofs. Giclées evolved into the new darlings of the art world. They are coveted by collectors, and are desired by artists because they don't have to be produced in large quantities requiring substantial capital investment and storage space. Giclées can be produced on demand, reducing the financial risk for artists. Giclées are priced between original art and regular limited edition lithographs. Limited edition lithograph prints are usually produced in editions of 500-1000 or more, while Giclées rarely exceed 50-100 reproductions.