Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Do you collect art? Are you an 'art collector'?

I spy a spider (framed £340)
12" x 8", coloured pencils
available from Llewellyn Alexander Galleries
SOFA Annual Exhibition 2008
copyright Katherine Tyrrell

A new Making A Mark Poll starts today in the side column of this blog. It's the other side of the equation. This one's not about selling art, it's about collecting art.

The question is "Do you collect art?" and the options are as follows:
  • Yes, I have 'a collection'
  • Yes, I've started to collect
  • I want to but not sure how
  • I want to but can't afford to
  • Not right now, maybe one day
  • No, I don't collect anything
  • No, I only produce art
This poll partly stems from a curious fact which I've been intrigued by for quite some time. I've noticed that for some reason when artists talk to other artists they appear to sometimes forget that artists also like art......

......and what do people who like art do?

They collect art!

In other words, a number of artists collect art as well as make art. The artists we talk to every day might also be the people who buy our art - or buy other people's art. I do know that some people sell their own art to fund their art collecting habit!

Polly (framed £220)
9" x 6, pen and ink and coloured pencils
available from Llewellyn Alexander Galleries
SOFA Annual Exhibition 2008
copyright Katherine Tyrrell

I'm also sure that many other artists are "would be collectors", but various reasons hold them back. These might be to do with anything from not having enough left in the budget to not knowing how to go about starting a collection to just not getting round to it!

I'm going to take advantage of the fact that artists are also collectors to ask people who read this blog to give us some sort of idea about the level of interest in collecting and the extent to which artists are also collectors. Hence the Poll question - Do you collect art?

In other words is it a few or some artists who collect art or do most artists collect or want to collect art?

That's just for starters - as at some point I want to tackle some more interesting questions - such as:
  • Would knowing the extent to which artists also collect art influence how we, as artists go about the business of marketing and selling their art. (For example, do you need a gallery to sell to another artist? How does having a blog affect whether or not you purchase art?)
One Way Stretch (framed £250)
pen and ink and coloured pencil
available from Llewellyn Alexander Galleries
SOFA Annual Exhibition 2008
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
  • Do people barter their art? I actually know this happens - but I'd like to know more about how common this is and something about how people reach a view about relative values (eg 3 of my drawings = 2 of your paintings)
  • Why do people collect? There's lots of possible reasons - if you're a collector what's yours?
  • What sort of art do people collect - in terms of media? For example is it art in the same media they use - but the artist is more accomplished than they are. Or is it artwork made using completely different media. Or does none of this matter at all - and people just buy what appeals to them - within budget of course!
  • What makes it "a collection"? Do you only collect (or aim to collect) certain subjects - or maybe paintings within a colour range - or is it the person who collects the art the unifying factor?
  • What changes people from thinking about collecting - to wanting to collect - to actually buying that first piece?
  • What changes you from being a person who buys an occasional piece of art into "an art collector"?
So lots of scope for future discussion. If you have any comments or views please use the comments function - I'm always really interested to hear what people think.

Meanwhile, I'm going to brave the rain today and go to the Private View and official opening of the 14th Annual Exhibition of the Society of Feline Artists at the Llewellyn Alexander Gallery. This is an exhibition which always has one of the most avid bunch of collectors that exists anywhere, anytime, any place - people who like cats! More about the exhibition tomorrow!

PS. This was the exhibition which generated my post about How to mat and frame your artwork. So - what do you think of the result?

Links:
  1. This is how to add a poll to a Blogger Blog
  2. You can see larger versions of the images of the cat drawings in Feline Art on my website.
  3. 14th Annual Exhibition of the Society of Feline Artists at the Llewellyn Alexander Gallery