How To Buy Art - Top Tips

How to Buy Art For Your Home

Buying art for a home can be a tricky process. Questions such as the medium, artist, size, frame and more can infuriate a buyer.

In addition, if you're buying for someone else, how do you take their needs into account?

If you're buying for a couple, how do you compliment them if they have different tastes? If you're buying for someone young, how do you choose an artwork which ages well?

To ease the burden of choosing the right artwork, take a look at this guide which gives you 10 tips on how to buy art.

1 - Consider Your Space

Sometimes when you walk into a home, you can feel how much it's aged.

Perhaps there’s a wall in your house which looks particularly bare or a certain room which is yearning for some colour to bring it to life.

To make it fresher, one thing you can do is buy art. It can be a fantastic way to change the dynamic of your living space but it's imperative that you have an idea of how much space you want to allocate to either one large artwork or several smaller ones.

Questions you need to ask yourself are:

  • Where is the space located?
  • How much space do you have to work with?
  • Are there other artworks that you need to take into consideration?
  • How will lighting affect the artwork?

Once these questions are answered, you'll have a clearer idea of what you're working with.

2 - Discover Your Style

Discovering your style is a fun but essential process.

With so much art out there, it gives you a fantastic opportunity to make a house a home, your home.

To get an idea of your personal taste, visit museums, art events, galleries or research online and explore the different movements, periods, styles, artists and more to uncover what resonates with you.

If your personal taste crosses over into different domains, see if there are any patterns and trends such as a particular theme or mix it up and let your personality shine through your desired space(s). 

3 - Think About the Current Decor

When you have an idea of the desired space for the painting, what's the current decor like?

It's not uncommon for paintings to outlast decor but there are many things you can do to make sure your painting stands out. 

For example, If you have an interior inspired by a certain time period like the '80s, '90s or perhaps art deco then a contemporary artwork would be able to steal the show.

Other examples include traditional artworks shining in contemporary settings.

Your current decor can be an inspiration for numerous combinations.

4 - Second Opinion

Buying art for someone else can be challenging.

However, seeking a second opinion can be a fantastic asset as you'll be able to bounce ideas of them.

Art galleries and museums can be a great starting point because they contain a wealth of information which can help you.

By asking questions, you can gain fantastic insights into what's popular in the market or what may work for your particular situation.

For example, if you're buying art for a couple with contrasting tastes then why not symbolise their relationship with life, love, togetherness and more!

5 - Follow Your Instincts

Your instincts can be a powerful motivator when buying art. 

There are times where an artwork speaks to you on a level which is below the surface.

Can you live with it? Can you live without it? Are willing to take the plunge?

It's here where your instinct and the artwork are interacting on a level which goes beyond what you can see but what you feel.

However, this isn't isolated to your first encounter with an artwork, it can even happen at your home!

If you don't feel a painting is where it's meant to be then considering moving it to another place as it may change the way you feel about it.

6 - Be Loud and Steal Attention

They say a picture is worth a thousands words. Why not test it?

An artwork which is loud can provide a fascinating dynamic to your home because how people interact with it will be unique to them.

This contrast can steal the attention and make the artwork something which is memorable for your guests.

Art is a fantastic way to add harmony, ambience, style and fun to a room.

You can use these loud paintings to shout something about your personality. This contrast can ensure that an artwork is not lost in a room.

Contrast is king?

7 - Investigate The Story

Every artwork has a story.

Discovering its inspiration can completely change the meaning of an artwork.

For example, did you know the subject for the artwork 'Whistler's Mother' by James Abbott McNeill Whistler was meant to be of someone else? His mother was a replacement for a model.

These stories can add to the price of an artwork, so it's important to get a clear understanding of what the artwork is and any elements that can affect its value.

In addition, uncovering these stories can bring you closer to the artist and inspire you to uncover more of their history and what they used to create the artwork.

8 - Be Open to Various Mediums

The world of art is full of many painting styles that contain their own characteristics. 

Oil paintings are renowned for their richness, water paintings for their unpredictability, pastels as they blur the lines between drawing and painting and more, many more.

Iconic artworks have been created with all these mediums among others and illustrates how diverse art can be.

By exploring the different mediums, you can discover their depth, harmony, appeal, ambience and more!

9 - Pleasure or Investment

Pleasure or Investment_ (1)

There's a difference between buying art for pleasure and art for investment. 

Investment art has that anticipation for a return and can come from established artists like Monet or buying from an emerging artist whose stature is expected to increase and thus, increase the value of their artworks. 

However, the latter can take a significant amount of time.

Buying art for pleasure is different. The motivation behind it isn't financial, it's subjective and your attraction towards the artwork is what draws you to it.

Whatever your motivations are, they both require a significant amount of time.

Investment art requires a substantial knowledge about the artist and their expected trajectory and non-investment art requires a thorough analysis of what resonates with you. 

Final Words

Buying art for your home can be a rewarding process.

However, art is not all you can find in auction. With antiques and collectables too, why not add even more stories to your home? Check out our guide here which explains what you need to know: Art, Antiques & Collectables in Auction.

The world of art is a diverse and fascinating place to discover and you bring some of that charm, awe and more into your home and breathe new life into your desired living spaces.

These 9 tips will enable you to find what really resonates with you and unlock a new a dynamic for your home.

Let us know in the comments which tip appealed to you the most!

If you feel you're ready to take a leap into the art world, explore our catalogue which features fine art, watercolours and more!

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