Thursday, June 09, 2016

That’s a great collection. You’ve got a lot of heart, kid

You’re going to buy a car. Some advice. Ignore other people’s opinions about the best models, forget resale value in your decision-making process, and don’t get bogged down with research. Go on! Buy the mauve open-top, you know you want to. This is pretty much the advice dealt out to prospective art collectors in the latest issue of NZ Listener (you can read it here) in the unsurprisingly titled The fine art of buying art. Of course and that's fine art as in paintings - sit down sculpture you're making a spectacle of yourself. We’ve reviewed these how-to-make-a-great-art-collection articles before but this one deserves some attention. It’s had time put into it, a range of people in Auckland (and one in Dunedin) have been consulted and it’s in a magazine with a heritage of cultural clout.

The consensus of the advice the art cognoscenti in the article offer is that if you’re going to buy art the best thing to follow is not your own research, not the market, not public collections but your passions. Of the wide range of experts quoted, only two suggest you might want to read up a bit on art before jumping in.

The two key dangers for potential collectors, according to the Listener anyway, are having something on your walls that ‘may cause guests to question your taste’ or (perhaps worse) cause you ‘to lose a lot of money’.

Eleanor Ainge Roy does conclude her article with the usual advice (these lists are also freely available on the internet) although it’s somewhat at odds with the views of the bunch of professionals she interviewed.

Colin McCahon or Douglas Badcock? What the hell, follow your heart.

Other OTN posts on advice to collectors 

Business Day
Poor collector’s guide