Where to Start When Collecting Art

Collecting art is a journey that enables us to curate a collection innately personal to ourselves that reflects our tastes, interests, and identities. Whether you're an art enthusiast seeking to dive into the world of collecting or a newbie eager to start your creative journey, this article will guide you through the essential steps to begin collecting art.

1. Define Your Aesthetic

Before you embark on your art-collecting journey, take the time to explore and define your aesthetic. Consider the types of art that resonate with you – from traditional oil paintings to contemporary digital art, sculptures, or mixed media creations. Explore art movements, visit local museums and galleries, or borrow art books from a nearby library. If there are no local museums or galleries near you, browse artwork online via The MET, Google Arts & Culture, Artsy, etc. Explore various artistic styles, genres, and time periods to understand better what captivates you.

2. Educate Yourself

Art collecting is an enriching experience that becomes even more rewarding when you know the artists, their techniques, and the art market. Attend gallery exhibitions, visit museums, and read art books, magazines, and online resources to expand your understanding of the art world. Engaging with the artistic community and participating in art-related discussions can provide valuable insights into art movements and trends.

3. Set a Budget

Art collecting doesn't have to be reserved for the elite; many artworks are available at varying price points (*cough* Tacit *cough*). Many artists offer limited edition prints at much more affordable prices, as well as their originals. Determine a realistic budget for your art collection, considering factors such as the cost of the artwork, framing, transportation, and potential insurance (all aspects we can help with at Tacit). You can adjust your budget accordingly as you gain more experience and knowledge.

4. Start Small

Begin your collection with affordable artworks from emerging artists or lesser-known creators. Starting small allows you to build your collection gradually while gaining confidence in your choices. Attend local art fairs, community exhibitions, and online platforms dedicated to emerging artists to discover unique pieces that align with your aesthetic preferences. 

5. Explore Diverse Sources

A key aspect of our personal art collections has been travelling - whenever we visit somewhere new, we purchase a piece of local art to add to our collections. This is a meaningful way of building your collection because the piece holds the memories of your travels. If travelling isn't sustainable for you at this particular moment, many digital resources exist. The art collection has become more accessible than ever before. Explore online marketplaces, galleries, and auction houses to discover a vast array of artworks from around the world. Social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok are valuable tools for connecting with artists and finding something new.

6. Cultivate Relationships

Developing relationships with artists, gallery owners, and fellow collectors can offer invaluable insights and guidance. Attend artist talks, workshops, and gallery openings to connect with like-minded individuals who share your passion for art. Something as small as striking up a conversation with someone in an art museum, whether patron or employee, can be beneficial. Networking is a vital part of the art community.

7. Authenticate and Protect Your Collection

As your art collection grows, it's important to ensure the authenticity and provenance of the artworks you acquire. Keep detailed records, certificates of authenticity, and purchase receipts for each piece. Consider insuring your collection to protect your investments against unforeseen circumstances.

8. Display and Enjoy

Your art collection should bring you joy and inspiration, so take the time to curate your space where your artwork can be prominently displayed. Experiment with different arrangements, lighting, and framing options to create an environment that enhances the visual impact of each piece.

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