Are you thinking of decorating a room or passage in your home and are considering hanging a painting by some contemporary artist or, perhaps, a gicleé reproduction on canvas of an old master, then you might be wondering, how do I know what to choose? Well, the answer to that question depends on you entirely. You may not consider yourself an art lover but you are if you love being surrounded by beautiful things. The American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882) wrote: Love of beauty is taste. The creation of beauty is art. So if art is the creation of beauty and you love beauty, it follows that you are an art lover.
Are you a lover of art?
You are a lover of art if a painted scene or painted figures or the subject matter of a work appeals to your senses. You are an art lover if something in the painting you are contemplating evokes a emotional response. That response may not always be pleasant. But when it is we may desire to explore that connection further by an acquisition because, really, we have stumbled upon the main motivation that our species has created and acquired art painting for millennia: art painting can excite the emotions and elevate the spirit. So how does a lover of art choose art painting works? Well, as is said in investing circles, let’s follow the money and see where it goes.
How do well-informed collectors select art paintings?
In a survey conducted recently by the Art Insurance subsidiary of the French multinational AXA group, entitled Collecting in the Digital Age, and published in Cologne in March 2014, it emerged that most collectors acquired art because of the emotional fulfillment it offered. Eighty percent (80%) agreed with the statement: I love to own beautiful things and to surround myself with them; Just as many (79%) agreed with: I enjoy occupying myself with art and developing a comprehensive knowledge of art. And 72% endorsed: Collecting is a passion of mine.
Other interesting observations emerged from the survey. The collectors who were interviewed were chosen randomly. They were not selected on the basis of gender or age or any other criterion. And although visitors to galleries and art fairs appear to be a mixed lot, it turned out that 76% of collectors are men. Also 84% have, at least, an undergraduate degree. And 46% are self-employed or run their own businesses. The sample of respondents was international.
Which countries buy the most art?
Since 2010, sales of art in China have been the highest in the world. For 2013, worldwide art sales, in US$ Million, as estimated by artprice.com are as follows:
Country US$ M
What art sells the most and who buys it?
Collecting art appears to occupy the prime years of our lives. In each of the three decades between the ages of 40 and 70, an equal number of members of the sample were found: 40 – 49: 25%; 50 – 59:25%; and 60 – 69: 23%. And art painting is far and away the most desired type of art. For about one-quarter (24%) of respondents, this was a first choice. As a first preference, 17% chose works on paper, 16% chose sculpture, and 13% chose photography.
View Gallery of Gicleé on Canvas Reproductions of Old Masters and 19th-century art paintings.