Start your art collection
with Own Art
Own Art (www.ownart.org.uk)
makes buying contemporary art and craft easy and affordable by letting you
spread the cost of your purchase over 10 months with an interest free loan.
It’s possible to borrow up to £2,000 or as little as £100 or
use the loan as a part payment towards a higher value artwork. Several items
can be grouped together to bring the total purchase price to over £100 or if
there are a number of things that you’ve set your heart on.
With over 250 galleries and thousands of original works to
choose from, it’s possible to start a collection from as little as £10 per
Use our find a gallery function on the Own Art website to see
a full list of galleries offering the scheme and to locate the ones that are
near you www.ownart.org.uk/find-a-gallery/
You’ll find everything from young to very established spaces; the purely
commercial to public institutions, charities and local authority funded
If you’re starting or
developing a contemporary art collection, we’ve put together some information
that might just help you on your way.
Go with your
Don’t buy an artwork because someone’s telling you it’s
fashionable or a good idea. Go for work that speaks to you and think about how
it makes you feel. There’s no guarantee it’ll increase in value, so don’t
anticipate this. If it does, see it as a bonus not a pre-requisite for buying.
Try not to get swayed into a decision because of all the ‘noise’ that might be
surrounding a popular artist.
Do your research
Visit as many galleries, exhibitions and studios as they can
to build up an understanding of your likes and dislikes. Ask questions and be
inquisitive and approach gallery staff for help and advice. If they are
passionate about art, they’ll be desperate to impart their expertise.
Don’t forget to drop into public galleries and museums -
what you can see there will also help develop your eye. Imagine you have to
take a piece from the collection home and then jot down your reasons as to why
you made a particular choice.
Look out for rising
Discover new talent at art school annual degree shows. These usually take place in May or June. Buying work by emerging artists is more risky
if you’re looking to collect art as an investment, but is a less expensive
option and you might just spot a future art star!
Attend art fairs and
Art fairs enable you to see many different galleries in one
place. Remember that gallery owners will
represent more artists than they have space to show on their stands, so don’t
be afraid to ask to see more work. Open studio events provide good
opportunities for meeting artists and seeing new work.
Keep your standards
Whatever your rationale and budget for buying art, settling
on the highest standard for every purchase should be one of your basic buying
principles. Don’t purchase work of lesser quality, just because it’s by a high
profile artist. Public galleries are good places to find high quality editions or
multiples by established artists at less than ‘market price’. Your purchase
will likely be contributing to fundraising efforts for future exhibitions and
Expand your knowledge
If you are looking to gain a better insight of the art world
or are interested in getting expert advice on how to buy and collect
contemporary art and craft, why not sign up for a course or join a group or
membership organisation such as The Contemporary Art Society? (www.contemporaryartsociety.co.uk)
Not only will you gain more knowledge, but being part of the bigger picture may
give you that push to buy your first piece of art. It could even give you that
extra bit of confidence to buy more adventurous artworks by artists you may not
have considered before. Aside from the above, it’s also a great way to meet
like-minded people who share your interest in the visual arts.
If you like the idea of buying and sharing art as part of a
group then The Collective (www.the-collective.info)
might be for you!
Find us on facebook www.facebook.com/ownart and follow us on twitter @ownartscheme
status. Terms and conditions apply. Applicants must be at least 18 years old.
Own Art is an Arts Council England initiative operated by Creative Sector
Services CIC, a Community Interest Company registered in England and Wales
under number 08280539. Registered address: 2-6 Cannon Street, London EC4M 6YH.
Own Art is
funded by Arts Council England in partnership with Creative Scotland and Arts
Council of Northern Ireland.
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