BUILDING AN AFFORDABLE ART COLLECTION

BUILDING AN AFFORDABLE ART COLLECTION

Have you ever seen an amazing piece of art on Instagram, in a gallery, art show and thought I could never afford that? You are not alone my friend, we all have. And I am going to share some secrets on how you can start building a great art collection.

 Shot of my office before I began hanging some pieces that I recently purchased. The two wall pieces are mine and the lady on the floor. Small pieces on ground: left: "Drawing 120"  Derek Overfield,  right: "Original Monotype"  Jenny Gray

Shot of my office before I began hanging some pieces that I recently purchased. The two wall pieces are mine and the lady on the floor. Small pieces on ground: left: "Drawing 120" Derek Overfield, right: "Original Monotype" Jenny Gray

  1. Contact the artist. As artists we struggle on how to afford great art just like you and we understand. Artists are flattered when someone wants to own a piece of his or her work and most will do anything they can to make that a reality for you.
  2. Ask about payment options. Often artists and galleries will allow you to pay for a piece in installments. I have done this for almost every piece I own ranging from $100 to $5000. Many times the decision lies with the artist so, even if the piece is part of a gallery collection, it may not be out of your reach. And if the gallery will not work with you there is a chance the artist has other pieces or options for you to explore. Don’t be afraid to ask.
  3. Buying small may be the best option. Smaller pieces are going to be more affordable and gallery walls are in. Artists will often create smaller works so that buyers have a variety of purchasing options. So if you are obsessed with an artist, buy a small piece. You never know when you can buy a bigger one.
  4. Buy a print. Artists will often release prints of their most popular works. Prints are a very affordable way to own part of the artist’s collection without breaking the bank. Even if a print does not exist in their collection, ask, there is a chance that they will be releasing it in the future.
  5. Keep an eye on Social Media. The best way to keep up with what an artist is doing is to follow them on social media. Instagram is quickly becoming the premier place for affordable art. Artist will often run information on giveaways, sales and pre-releases of their latest works through social media.
  6. Remember it is an investment. I always laugh when someone will swoon over a piece of art and talk about how they cannot afford it. Then they will go out and spend the same amount of money on a pair of shoes, a handbag or a weekend getaway. Artists pour their heart, soul and long hours into their pieces. And while a pair of shoes may go out of style, great art never does and it is so personal.
  7. Affordable art does not me lesser quality. Just because a piece may be within your price range doesn’t mean that it is not a great piece of art. There are a lot of great places out there to find affordable art. And art is about the connection, not the name of the artist. While I cannot lie, I own some big names I also own a lot of smaller artists and love those pieces just as much.

Purchasing art has been a long time obsession. For many years I stayed away from purchasing original art as I thought I could not afford it and I felt that, as an artist, I should be decorating my home with my own work. This could not be further from the truth. Once I began to collect works from the artists I love, how I viewed my work and who I wanted to be as an artist changed. I was inspired and found an inner joy.

Three pieces from my collection. Top left: Print "Blue Ribbon Winner" by Lisa Golightly. Bottom left: Original work "Sailing" by Jenny Gray. Right: Original work "Disguise" by Clare Elsaesser.

Art is a very personal thing. You have to connection with the piece; it has to make you feel something.

  • Do not let others shop for you.
  • Do not buy a piece just because it is the latest trend.
  • Purchase pieces you connect with and love.
  • Artwork does not have to match the couch; it has to match you.

Art is about making a visual and emotional connection. If you love it, it will work in any space.

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