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A portfolio exchange is a suite of prints, usually addressing a common theme, with uniform size requirements, an edition size, and sometimes, but most often not, a limitation on the media used. Usually, the media is open, as long as it incorporates some form of traditional printmaking. For each of these exchanges, there is an organizer who invites the participants, collates the prints, creates a colophon and returns the completed portfolios to the participants. As a participant, you mail in a edition (for example, 30 copies of your original print) and you receive in return, a copy of each person's original print, as well as a certain number of your edition accepted into a permanent collection. The portfolio exchange is a unique opportunity that allows participants to spread their work all over the world simultaneously, in public and private collections. It is a way to build your own personal artwork collection, a great teaching tool, and challenge yourself to work in different themes, allowing the element of chance to come into play in your own body of work.
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