When it comes to buying art, not many of us have sufficient knowledge to make an informed decision.
What should you consider – the size of the artwork, the colour, the subject matter or the work of a prominent artist, perhaps someone whose work you want to add to your collection? People often purchase an artwork because they experience an immediate connection with the work; others buy art because it matches their decor or perfectly fits into a space in their home. There truly is no right or wrong reason, but do consider some basic guidelines.
- Oil paintings are usually originals. Make sure your “original” is not a copy, except if it is a properly executed Old Masters copy.
- Make sure your “original” is not a print on canvas on which some brushstrokes have been added to make it look original. If in doubt, don’t hesitate to ask someone who knows a little about the subject.
- Usually investment art is purchased from a recognised gallery and will be expensive but you may have a higher return on your investment than if you invested in international stock markets.
Not all of us can afford expensive art though. So, what’s the next best thing? Should we purchase a nice piece of art from a market as that is where many artists have a monthly or weekly stand to peddle their wares?
If you are looking for an artwork, ask around your area, ask people to recommend an artist, visit his or her studio and select a good piece or attend art openings and local exhibitions. Exhibitions and Art Fairs are held in every city and small town in South Africa and the paintings are always for sale. Organisers of exhibitions (usually Art Societies) will also give you good advice. Members of Art Societies range from student artists to seasoned professional artists, offering an enormous range of work of high standard and affordable prices.
A good piece of advice recently given by a wonderful local artist is: “Look at plenty of art and keep looking; the more you look, the more you self-educate. When the time comes to buy something, you will know exactly what you really, really like. The more art you see, the better equipped you are when in buying mode.”
Whatever you purchase, remember that a piece of art will give you endless pleasure. It brings beauty into your life, gives your room a finished look and if well-placed, has the power to transform a space.
When you place art in your home there is only one opinion that matters: yours. It all comes down to how you want to feel when you enter your living space. So why not buy a piece of art … push out the boat and enjoy something you could cherish for life!