Interested in buying art but not sure where to start?
Whether buying for personal enjoyment or for investment purposes, art can be a worthwhile, lucrative, investment due to its tendency to appreciate over time.
If buying for personal gratification, buy with your heart and personal tastes. If investment is the goal, authenticity is critical.
Once you decide why you want to buy, purchasing art can take you in several different directions.
First, educate yourself by spending time in museums and galleries or going to art shows, said DiAnne Tindell, an art appraiser and master restoration specialist based in Nashville, Tenn.
“Art is a matter of personal taste. What you wouldn’t give 10 cents for, someone else might pay a hefty price,” Tindell said.
The greater exposure you have – either through classes, sponsored gallery events or art leagues – the better armed you’ll be when buying.
A trip to your local gallery will allow you to see a wide range of contemporary and classical art.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Learn about the style the painting or piece is in, the period from which it came, what the artist was trying to communicate.
Buying art can offer a sense of community. Learn about the history of the art. Every piece has a story to tell.
Would Van Gogh’s Sunflowers be as well-known or as valuable today without the legendary tale of the tortured artist severing his own ear? Perhaps not.
Still, there are many ways to look at the value of art, Tindell said.
“When I buy something, I’m going to buy it because it’s something I truly want and it has nothing to do with whether someone tells me it’s worth $100 or $1000,” said Tindell.
“If you’re in love with it, it should have some value to you and beyond that to your family and the people who inherit it.”
The more you learn, the more you’ll start to develop your personal taste and it will become easier to distinguish value.
Do stay away from trends. Fashionable art that matches your sofa is nice in the moment, but a good piece of art will stand on its own for generations to come.
Keep in mind that good provenance almost always increases the value and desirability of a work of art because, first and foremost, it authenticates the work.
Finally, buying art should be an enjoyable experience. The professionals at Worthington Galleries are here to help, offering a complete list of turn-key and a la cart services.
Visit Worthington Galleries Monday-Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1181 Nashville Pike in Gallatin, Tenn. or browse our online inventory which is updated daily.