One of the recurring comments from our clients is how we make buying art easy, fun and unintimidating for them. While we absolutely love receiving such heartwarming feedback - who doesn't? - it also bothers us. It bothers us because sometimes our clients have gone to galleries and they haven't been made to feel special.
The art world has built up this whole structure of superiority around art and artists that actually makes us feel uncomfortable when we enter galleries, when we ask the price of a work, or even when we want to know more about an artist. This structure is a totally false construct, and deserves to be torn down ;)
We're making a start here with three art-world myths we want to explode, here and now.
1. Art is Always Expensive
It is certainly not! You can pick up an original drawing or illustration for less than a hundred pounds, and a beautiful photographic print, printed to museum quality, for a few hundred pounds (like the gorgeous Teresa Freitas work at the top of this post). Small paintings, collages and textiles, like this work from Nadia Nizamudin, can also be very reasonable.
Instalment schemes - we use Klarna, but there are a few - allow you to spread the cost of your payment over a period of months. You'd be effectively spending as much as your monthly coffee habit, or gym membership, but buying something beautiful that will last you forever.
2. You Need to be Educated About Art
Wrong again ;)
You don't need to know a single thing about art to buy it and have it in your home. Yes, you might find it interesting to learn more about a particular artist, medium or period in art history, but it's purely optional.
If a work speaks to you, if it moves you, if it engages you, then that is enough.
And if you want to know more, and you're comfortable asking questions of the gallery, then go for it! A good gallerist would love nothing better than to chat to you about the artist's work.
3. It’s a Big Commitment
Yes, it is a big commitment, but no bigger than buying a piece of furniture, and you wouldn’t stress out about that. Do some research — visit museums, galleries and sit at home looking online at platforms such as Artsy, Artnet and yes, Subject Matter. That way you can get a sense of what you like, what appeals to your eye and what medium (painting, photography, sculpture, collage) you would like to go for.
If there is a particular gallery whose style you like, get to know them — visit in person or shoot them an email. You can even get in touch with artists directly if their contact details are on the website.
Remember, more than anything, to trust your taste and your eye. Don't be swayed by others and don't worry about what people will think about the art you choose. One of my friends has an incredibly eclectic selection of art in her living room - a curator would never put those works together - and it looks amazing because the energy behind that collection is all hers.