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  1. #1
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    Art Buying Advice

    Does anyone know of any businesses that offer this service? I know there are a lot of websites that have tips, but I'm looking for a business and someone I can talk to. Thanks!


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    Why would you ask someone about buying art unless it was for investment purposes? Even then why not do your own research? Buy what you like; there is no need for advice on buying art. Plenty of sites that have auction records for artists and prices paid so you don't overpay for something.

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    I am doing research for the company I work for. I appreciate your opinion about it. I also wonder if many people feel the same way you do.

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    Buying art for an investment is based on what rich people are told art is worth. That is why people pay ridiculously high prices for work that other artists consider garbage. Typically the quasi intellectual snobs with influence deride the type of work that you find on this site. Because of this, good art isn't really worth much, where as splatter paints are.


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    Most major cities (if not all) have people that work as art consultants that will advise on art purchases, many of them are also artists. Not sure how you would find them but I imagine googling art consultant and your city will turn up a few names.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sarahfornof View Post
    I am doing research for the company I work for. I appreciate your opinion about it. I also wonder if many people feel the same way you do.
    I suspect most people here will feel that way, seeing as most people here are real artists (or aspiring real artists) instead of postmodernist bullshit artists, and thus they do not fall for the notion of someone's unmade bed as great work of art.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig D View Post
    Most major cities (if not all) have people that work as art consultants that will advise on art purchases, many of them are also artists. Not sure how you would find them but I imagine googling art consultant and your city will turn up a few names.
    Just wanted to add that any art galleries that are local might have a good idea of who to talk to or may even be able to help.
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    Quote Originally Posted by blogmatix View Post
    I suspect most people here will feel that way, seeing as most people here are real artists (or aspiring real artists) instead of postmodernist bullshit artists, and thus they do not fall for the notion of someone's unmade bed as great work of art.
    I think you may want to know that Corporate art collections also may buy realist works, etc. and that their pocketbooks are a lot larger than most.
    The OP didn't say they wanted to buy installation art, just art. Patrons are a good thing, I don't see a need to potentially insult them.

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    Man you guys are harsh. I think that maybe coming here and asking is a form of research so the OP is doing at least part of it right, right? I wonder if the lack of action here has anything to do with people who don't know things being afraid to post questions because we are so harsh. That's not a fact just an observation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig D View Post
    I think you may want to know that Corporate art collections also may buy realist works, etc. and that their pocketbooks are a lot larger than most.
    The OP didn't say they wanted to buy installation art, just art. Patrons are a good thing, I don't see a need to potentially insult them.
    Well, my post was a comment on a comment and I am now too lazy to try explain the whole thing. Suffice it to say that I agree with what Dpaint said: "Buy what you like; there is no need for advice on buying art." This is all the more true for corporate buyers, who can afford to buy whatever they like.

    Of course, things may be different for buyers looking for an investment, but for them my only advice is the same as my advice to people who ask me which lottery ticket number they should choose: invest in something else. Art (and gambling) is an extremely risky investment.

    Perhaps we are being harsh, but asking what art one should buy is a bit like someone going onto a nutrition forum and asking what flavour of pizza he should buy. Well, jeez, if you can afford pizza, why not just buy what you LIKE?
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    Perhaps we are being harsh, but asking what art one should buy is a bit like someone going onto a nutrition forum and asking what flavour of pizza he should buy. Well, jeez, if you can afford pizza, why not just buy what you LIKE?
    Do you really think that is the same thing? Some people are at a stage when they need help knowing what is good. Getting a lot of different input might help with that education. If I would have bought just what I liked when I was younger, and actually had more disposable cash, I would have a collection of crap. If I would have been a little more thoughtful and chosen what I liked with a little more support form those in the know at least my collection would be seeded with some pieces around which to build a real collection.

    I had a guy on the bus ask me if he should buy a Thomas Kincade print which he had his eye on. I said buying is really about what you want to have on you walls, but be aware that it is not a real print and that the extreme price tag does not guarantee that it will go up in value. In fact it will most likely decrease because of saturation. He appreciated the info and decided not to buy. Two years later he talked to me on the bus again, he's a driver, and said that some time after we had talked he found the print for one tenth the price and then bought it.

    My point is that an occasional ignorant question does not mean that everyone is too lazy to find their own answer, they might just not know how. Having said that I am still a firm believer in the fact that there are stupid questions, I hate it when teachers say that there are no stupid questions, but occasionally I feel a little more generous. Maybe it's because I just got paid for a painting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    I wonder if the lack of action here has anything to do with people who don't know things being afraid to post questions because we are so harsh. That's not a fact just an observation.
    I think the lack of action has more to do with the long time effects of having a site that popped up virus warnings, a long downtime (ie a week). More than anything else. If the higher number of members are sketchbooks, challenges and actual post of art making, than Lounge posts -I actually consider this a good thing.

    Though I am not disagreeing with your posts as some people are generally ignorant. But I think the OP may give more specifics in this case?

    Sometimes it can be a loaded question without realizing it, like coming in and asking for a car to buy without going into further details.

    If the OP said "I'm looking for advice to buy certain art for X reason for a company" - it would be more helpful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcarman View Post
    Do you really think that is the same thing? Some people are at a stage when they need help knowing what is good. Getting a lot of different input might help with that education. If I would have bought just what I liked when I was younger, and actually had more disposable cash, I would have a collection of crap. If I would have been a little more thoughtful and chosen what I liked with a little more support form those in the know at least my collection would be seeded with some pieces around which to build a real collection.
    In which case my advice would be: don't buy anything until you feel your taste has matured a bit. It will mature by looking at lots and lots of art. There are no shortcuts to mature taste any more than there are to learning how to paint well.

    I had a guy on the bus ask me if he should buy a Thomas Kincade print which he had his eye on. I said buying is really about what you want to have on you walls, but be aware that it is not a real print and that the extreme price tag does not guarantee that it will go up in value. In fact it will most likely decrease because of saturation. He appreciated the info and decided not to buy. Two years later he talked to me on the bus again, he's a driver, and said that some time after we had talked he found the print for one tenth the price and then bought it.
    Why does it matter if its value goes up or down? A work's value to ME is what counts when I buy it, not its value to the market. I don't want any of Damien Hirst's pickled animals in my house, whatever their value on the market. I would happily put some of your pieces on my walls, and I couldn't possibly care less whether they are a penny a dozen or whether Sotheby agents have wet dreams about them.

    Mind you, advice on where to get fair prices would be useful. On the other hand, when you look at lots and lots of art, you eventually begin to get a good idea of prices too.

    My point is that an occasional ignorant question does not mean that everyone is too lazy to find their own answer, they might just not know how. Having said that I am still a firm believer in the fact that there are stupid questions, I hate it when teachers say that there are no stupid questions, but occasionally I feel a little more generous. Maybe it's because I just got paid for a painting.
    True enough, and no real insult intended toward the OP. I suppose it's just that when people ask whether there are businesses that offer advice on buying art, many of us imagine some business executive who needs to invest a million dollars of his company's money in art, and is thinking more about what art will be worth ten million in a decade than about what art is actually good. Hence I think for many of us, our po-mo alarms started going off, so we started seeing red.

    The "art market" is, almost in its entirety, a con game. You can make a lot of money playing the game, if you don't mind ending up feeling slightly dirty.

    Thus, in summary: I still think one should buy what one likes. One should just be aware that it actually takes years to work out what one likes. For those who want to buy art as nothing more than an investment (some of them actually store the hugely expensive paintings they buy in a vault instead of actually looking at it!) I have no advice whatever. I'm not entirely convinced they are friends of art at all.
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  19. #15
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    Why does it matter if its value goes up or down? A work's value to ME is what counts when I buy it, not its value to the market. I don't want any of Damien Hirst's pickled animals in my house, whatever their value on the market. I would happily put some of your pieces on my walls, and I couldn't possibly care less whether they are a penny a dozen or whether Sotheby agents have wet dreams about them.
    It matters when an inkjet print is being sold for over $700 and being advertised as an original. I don't mind giving a little advice then. We can tell people to wait until they have taste to buy art and put posters on the wall in the meantime, but occasionally an opportunity comes up to buy real art. Should we all just wait? Again, I don't know the intent of the OP. Could be a spammer for all I know but I don't mind giving out a warning or two to early buyers.

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    After careful consideration I have decided to agree with bcarman. One should not insult patrons of the arts, even if they buy pickled sheep. They after all also frequently buy the good stuff. This means I'll also have to tone down my sometimes vehement criticism of the church: they have been generous patrons of some of the greatest art in history. Here in South Africa there has been a huge upsurge of religious fundamentalism, and these churches are often very rich and will pay huge amounts for large scale pictures of Jesus etc. Funny thing is that I very much like religious art, heathen though I am. :-)
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    Heathen is the only way to go. I don't even tackle the corporate art machine bnlogmatrix because I don't belong to that world. Just as in the academic world I have done everything in my power to avoid teaching classes that have anything to do with art that needs more words than images to tell its story. I have been fairly successful at clearing away art, word used with a grain of salt, worlds that mean little to me and that's quite a feat considering I teach.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arshes Nei View Post
    I think the lack of action has more to do with the long time effects of having a site that popped up virus warnings, a long downtime (ie a week). More than anything else. If the higher number of members are sketchbooks, challenges and actual post of art making, than Lounge posts -I actually consider this a good thing.
    Everything seems normal to me, most people hang in the sketchbooks section between 3-400 and about a 100 each in the lounge, Art discussion and WIP. Its been that way since I've been here on average hasn't it?

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    Some of your ideas are why I don't just make art and hope to sell it. I don't think it's an effective way to do the "art game" at all. I'd rather look at companies who need artists - gaming companies, advertising companies, even small business who need artists to make posters, and small crafts (like bracelets you can sell for 5 bucks). I'm sure there's more options out there though. Haven't researched it in a long time.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dpaint View Post
    Everything seems normal to me, most people hang in the sketchbooks section between 3-400 and about a 100 each in the lounge, Art discussion and WIP. Its been that way since I've been here on average hasn't it?
    There have been less posts in the Art Discussion and Lounge (which to me is fine anyways) However, I see that's getting back to normal again with some of the posts we've been getting especially in Art Discussion :/

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