Without breaking the bank.
There are few things more intimidating than starting an art collection. What do I know about art, we wail, sure that our taste doesn’t stretch much beyond that Bob Marley poster and the print our ex left behind a few years ago. Yep, it can be hard – not to mention expensive – to start collecting art, and so most of us never do, content to imagine a collection is the preserve of the one per cent.
Yet, collecting art is one of the great joys in life, and surprisingly inexpensive once you know what you are doing. Your collection will change as you do, and as you add new pieces over the years, each one will tell a story of where you were (both physically and emotionally) when you bought it.
So how to get started? Firstly, and crucially, you need to (1) Have a Plan. Yes, planning is important. There’s no point splashing out on a massive ceramic for the sideboard if you share a studio apartment with a party animal. According to Catherine O’Riordan, who runs SO Fine Art Editions in Powerscourt Townhouse, it’s important to trust your taste, and the gallery. “This is where a good gallery plays an integral role in choosing a piece of art. They will look at the space you wish to fill and your decor. Size is important and often clients show me the space via a photograph and specify wall size. Engage with the gallerist and tell them what you like, and a good gallery will present you with works that suit your style and budget. Establish a good relationship with a gallery as some galleries offer a service of bringing artworks to their client on trial.”
According to IMMA’s Head of Collections, Christina Kennedy, prospective collectors shouldn’t rush into anything. “Take a bit of time to figure out where you interests lie, and what gives you a buzz,” she says.