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Home Is Where The Art Is

Posted by
on March 29, 2014 at 05:17 PM

What are the requisites when curating art for home? What kind of art does one buy, and how does one create a collection? But most importantly, how does curating art for the home change everything?

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Art is everywhere. It lies in the lavish painting hanging on the wall, in the tribal sculpture you picked up from Borneo, or even the exquisite Oriental rug that rests on your floor. That’s the beauty of art, it is indefinable and fluid. But then, it can be so much more than decoration; it can be an investment. Unlike real estate and other commodities, the beauty lies within the fact that the investment can be an aesthetic one. But as always, the question remains: How can you find a piece that will appreciate in value?

Art, like property, has a lot to do with business, but even more to do with the buyer's taste. Perhaps the best way to insure your investment is by purchasing something you like. Art prices rise and fall, so if you buy something that you like, you'll be able to live with it through the lean years. Some basic knowledge in art is appreciated, but don't think that your knowledge begins and ends there. The art world is like any other market, it lives on what's happening today and it hunts for what will happen tomorrow, contemporary being the keyword.

Museums will give you an indication of the field; galleries will tell you what's going on in the world of art right now. Think of galleries and shows as the marketplace; you must attend them to know what's going on. As a bonus, gallery staff can usually answer a lot of your questions -- but keep in mind, they are salespeople. But at the end of the day, is it true that you can make money by curating art?

Yes and no. The truth is that you can make money in art, but you can't always count on it. Just remember; the hottest thing can be considered valuable one day and junk the next. The significance of art is infinite. Whether it is considered décor or as an investment, the potential that any piece of artwork can have in your personal collection is uncharitable.

It goes to show that if you fall in love with a piece of art, you can make it work. However, while curating art, is it necessary to look at it only as an investment, and not an accessory that can brighten up your home? You can usually make your furniture work with it and thus should not hesitate to buy something you love because you fear it won't fit into your home. Buy art ONLY because you love it, and not because it fits the size of the wall or matches your sofa set.

Whether you plan to buy art as an investment or not, in the end, the true challenge is to make it the show-stopping centerpiece in your home. Make sure its placement is giving it the pride of place in the setting and that the scale of the furniture and furnishings around it is appropriate.

 This may take some trial and error, and some moving around for as long as it takes until you are satisfied. Once you are satisfied, address lighting the work properly. There are some great examples of how some very strong works, which also serve as great investments, are not overwhelming the spaces where they have been placed. A mixture of paintings, photographs and sculpture collected over time and travels weaves a layered tapestry about one's interests and aesthetic. Think about which medium you prefer and where your tastes lean before you start shopping. The goal is to pinpoint pieces that mean something to you, not simply choose decor to fill wall space. Basically, it’s about choosing art with thought, art that works for you.

Large-scale pieces can be more expensive. If you can't make that type of investment yet, create a gallery wall of smaller prints by independent artists, grouped together to take the place of one large piece. Reframe pieces you already own to give them a new life. While this looks good, it has the potential of being a gold mine at some point in the near future.

Determine how much space you have available and search for pieces that are the right size. Size matters — for contemporary art, bigger is better to maximize impact. Use works by the same artist or works that have a common style to bring cohesiveness and a curated feel to the art on display, or go radical and in the opposite direction: For a budget-friendly piece, stretch a handsome, high-quality textile across a blank canvas. Collecting art with the idea of building a proper collection maybe a challenge, but at the end of the day, the art that helps make your house a home, is the icing on the cake.

And making an investment off it is just the cherry on the top.

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