Where To Start When Thinking Of Building An Art Collection

Featured on www.forbes.com

Sometime after graduating from college-era dorm posters and Ikea art, many young professionals decide it’s time to invest in art that’s worth something, elevating their home decor while possibly making some money.

And while developing a personal art collection is a form of social currency, it’s also a quantifiable investment—one that may feel intimidating to anyone getting started. 

Maybe you’re worried your purchase will lose value, or perhaps there’s some fear about seeming foolish to those who have been trained to spot the next Jeff Koons. 

It can be hard to know where to begin. Whether you don’t know a Monet from a Manet or need help identifying your tastes, here are some tips to help you get started. 

Identify Your Aesthetic

Although having art displayed in your home can be seen as a colloquial “flex,” any experienced art world insider will tell you that a collection should bring the most joy to the collector. In short: Don’t buy art to appease others or to build up the most valuable possible portfolio (not yet, anyway).

The best way to find out what kind of art you like is to expose yourself to as much of it as possible, according to Lindsay Griffith, international head of contemporary editions at Christie’s auction house. Griffith recommends visiting nearby galleries, museums and art fairs to start. Dallas Contemporary, for example, curates regional and international artists, while Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects showcases pieces with more experimentation. As you browse, don’t be afraid to ask questions about the art as well as artists. The relationship you develop with gallerists may eventually pay off once you’re ready to buy.

Don’t underestimate the power of digital discovery either, Griffith said.

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