A piece of art is not just another décor item that adds to the look and feel of your home. It is more than that. It is also a work that elevates you every time you look at it and is connected with you deeply. Hence, owning a piece of art can at times happen instantly, other times gradually. It is an investment beyond money.
Buying art can be intimidating, especially if you are a new art collector. Art collecting is a hobby for some and an investment for others. Either way, the passion and the interest for art is fairly the same, just probably at variating levels of knowledge. But this should not be anyone’s way to stop them from buying and collecting what they genuinely love.
Here are few things an art lover must keep in check while picking up their art:
Go with your instincts: Art is about taste and passion. Your eyes and heart should be drawn to, charmed and moved by a work of art. If your heart springs at the sight of a piece, then it might be something you need to consider. It may fall under impulsive buying but trusting your instincts and inner calling is what you can best put to work while making this decision. This can never go wrong if you are 100 percent sure in the first go. Also, the connection almost lifts you up every time you glance at it knowingly and unknowingly. Go with your choice, not trend; buy what you love.
Adding meaning to your decor: Whether abstract or theme based, picking up meaningful art is another best practice to follow. Buy art that transforms the atmosphere of a room. Artworks can significantly help evoke a certain atmosphere. Since we are talking about meaning here, there are many artists who create a series of artworks. These series can be spread out in your home creating a perfect flow throughout. Another aspect you can keep in mind is that does the artwork help create a mood that you would like to convey?
Time is key: If you are an ardent art follower then you probably know what you want and where you will find it. But if you are absolutely new here then you definitely need help. Don't rush, research, connect with the right people, and take your time to understand your taste and what may resonate with you. If you are still feeling lost, there is nothing better than a trip to the museum, exhibitions or a walk-around a contemporary art fair.
Budget: One can see art in anything and everything. There is absolute variety when it comes to art, especially in India. There are people who find their piece of art in rural and ancient art, which is rooted in our traditions and culture. Then there are people who are looking for a contemporary touch in their piece of art. The range is immense and you need to fix your mind at what it is that you are looking for. Sticking to a solid budget will stop you straying into dangerous territory. Fix a budget and work around that or you will be lost in between marvelous pieces of art and not close to your budget situation.
Maintaining a piece of art: While buying you must keep maintenance in mind as it is one purchase that will hold a place in your home and life for years to come. As a good practice, you might like to enquire what medium is your artwork and learn about its care. Educating yourself about how to protect your artwork is one of the wisest things you will do if you plan to continue collecting and investing in art. Few things that go as a rule of thumb with any artwork is regular dusting with a soft cloth and protecting it from direct sunlight as extreme temperatures can damage the piece of art.
(The writer is a professional artist, educator, and co-founder of You Lead India Foundation)