art · luxury

Art Collectors Conundrum: Unpredictability

In the Art Collectors Conundrum series, we continue to explore some of the topics of interest for inexperienced art collectors/appreciators or aspiring art world professionals. Instead of simply noting the issue at hand, we ponder some ways to mitigate some of the invisible barriers of the art world.

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(all photos by James Van Der Zee)

One of the biggest stumbling blocks on the road to art connoisseurship is unpredictability within the art market. Many would-be collectors are unnerved at the thought of investing significant amounts of money into art, only for that art to potentially never appreciate in value.

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Here’s the problem with that logic: it assumes that art is purely an investment, when, in fact, art, is a tangible item that can be enjoyed now while also possibly growing in monetary value in the future. Let’s face it: we choose to invest in different things all of the time. We invest in our homes, our cars, our personal appearance, our careers, and our families. Many of these things are depreciable assets (cars will lose value, we won’t look 22 forever). However, art is one of the few investments that can be potentially monetized at a future date, though you can enjoy it right now, while you own it.

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The key to weathering the unpredictability of the art resale market? Only purchase art that you completely enjoy NOW. As a new collector, there’s no need to speculate about how much the art will be worth in the future if you’re enjoying the art right now, as it hangs on your wall or stands in your living space (in the case of sculptures).

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There’s no concern over how a piece will appreciate if you’re “appreciating” the piece right now, as it holds space in your collection. Focus on purchasing the art that moves you, the art that lights you up or makes you stop and think. Only buy the art that invokes feelings in you. Then, no matter what the art is worth today or tomorrow, you will have enjoyed it and you will have gotten immeasurable value from it right NOW.

(all photos courtesy of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts digital exhibit, The Black Photographer’s Annual, Volume 1)

 

2 thoughts on “Art Collectors Conundrum: Unpredictability

    1. Thank you! I can imagine that those photos are incredible. I love vintage photography: there’s something about the styling, the lighting, and even the grainyness in the resulting photo that’s so charming.

      Like

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