degas paintings photo

Degas, Two Dancers

So You Want To Be An Art Collector – How Do I Do That?

Be an art collector – follow your dream. Have you always wanted to collect art? If you are just beginning to be an art collector, then the best thing to do is start with an open mind. You need to develop your aesthetic sensibilities, learn how to read a work of art and be curious. Take some time to initially decide what area of art interests you, then search out the places where you might find that. Visit galleries and ask questions about the art and artists that have been showing there. If you come across an artist that appeals to you, check out more of their work.

 

You need to understand the difference between buying art and collecting it. On the surface, it might seem to be the same thing. However what often happens when you are an art buyer is that you tend to collect random works that you like and your collection doesn’t necessarily have a cohesion to it. Collecting art, on the other hand, is more of a considered and controlled activity. People have all different kinds of collections, everything from dolls to stamps, butterflies and plants. The one thing that these collections all have in common is that the collector is passionate about the subject and will often limit their selection to a particular branch of it, for example, a stamp collector might collect only 20th-century first day covers. Collectors also, usually self-educate and become quite knowledgeable about their chosen collectables. We find the same principles apply when collecting art.

Andy Warhol, Campbell's Soup

Andy Warhol, Campbell’s Soup

For instance, if you wished to collect 60s pop art, then you would need to learn who the most famous artists of the period were.  How many works they produced, were they prolific artists, and are there still many paintings available to be bought. These and other questions like them, will help you understand the popularity of the artists.

 

Another way you might develop your collection if you want to be an art collector is by collecting landscapes of a particular period, or art movement.  As you can see, the possibilities are endless. Many collectors go to exhibitions which include emerging artists and begin following ones they like.  The might then buy a couple of smaller early works, to test the waters and follow the artist’s progress. As the artist gains in popularity, they will perhaps invest in the purchase of a major work, and then search around for artists who paint in a similar genre.  In this way, they can add to and develop their collection, so it maintains continuity.

Photo by oddsock

Photo by Prof. Mortel

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