advice for collecting artwork


Over the years, many art collectors have come to me looking for advice for whom or what to collect. I have always cautiously recommend that collectors first and foremost, collect what inspires them or what will bring joy to their lives. Unfortunately, there are many who assemble work based on the hope that monetary values will increase over time like a good stock or mutual fund. Sometimes collecting artwork is a matter of supply and demand economics or a matter of pure innovation. It may also be a matter of pure refinement and execution. So here are some general suggestions to collecting: 1. Find work that is innovative. 2. Look for work that is well executed or refined. 3. Ascertain how many pieces the artist produces a year. 4. Is there integrity in the pricing structure? Many times we are in a position of wondering if what we paid for is really worth it. In collecting art, these four suggestions will help you along the way and will hopefully guide you to a positive experience. Ideally, if you find all of these suggestions in an artistís work and career, you can usually find a relatively safe acquisition. Happy hunting! Leroy Brown

Wendell Harris says...

I do wish that galleries and museums would stop assuming that everyone who buys art is a "collector." Many occasional buyers of art (my wife and I included) buy what we see thatt we like and can afford at the time. To buy is not necessarily to "collect."

Bobbi says...

Thanks for the "4 points" on buying. about elaborating a bit on each. That would be great. For instance, What is the significance of the number of pieces the artist produces each year? What does one look for to see if a piece is well made? What do you mean by "pricing integrity"?

Thanks for the good blog.


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