From the outside, collecting art might seem like a daunting venture. We have all seen the enormous prices that artworks can sell for in high-profile auctions and the precise steps that museums take when displaying works.
Fortunately, for most art, it is much less complicated than that. A lot of contemporary and modern art is a lot more durable these days, and there are many services and resources that can help inform you on how best to take care of your art.
Don’t be afraid to start small. Small prints and photographs are an excellent entry-point into art collecting. They come in multiple sizes, and price points, meaning that you can definitely find something you like that won’t break the bank.
Look a little into the history of art. While a thorough knowledge of the history of art is certainly not a pre-requisite for art-collecting, knowing some key art terms can certainly help you with figuring out what art you like and dislike. The Tate online glossary is an excellent resource to help familiarise budding art enthusiasts with various movements and techniques. Will Gompertz’s book What Are You Looking At? gives a wonderful overview of 150 years of modern art, filled with comprehensive explanations and interesting anecdotes.
Visit your local galleries. Take a look around for smaller gallery spaces, whether they be university galleries, graduate shows or Artist-Run Initiatives to get a sense of what is happening in your local art scene. There is often so many interesting art-related events happening right under your nose. Pick up an Art Guide and get exploring!
Let your personal taste be your guiding force. You are buying art first and foremost for your own personal enjoyment, so it makes sense to find pieces that you resonate strongly with. Trends in art often move slower than those in fashion or décor, so making a personal and meaningful choice is what is most important.
Image Credit: Otomys Director Hannah Abbott pictured with Poppies by Sophia Szilagyi