“Life without art would be a series of emails” Grayson Perry
Why buy art? The simple answer for some may be “because it matches my curtains.” The motivations for bringing original art into one’s physical space can be deeper, more complex than simply enhancing one's interiors.
There are myriad reasons for art purchases. One of the primaries is emotion. Over 70% of European consumers surveyed agreed with the statement, “When choosing art for my home, the way the piece makes me feel is the most important. The 62% of responses said art was purchased “because they fell in love with it.”
Top 10 reasons to buy original art:
1. Art is a powerful form of expression
Not only for the artists who create it, but also for those who own it. Art allows people to express their individuality and to represent their beliefs, feelings, hopes, convictions and philosophies in socially (and visually) acceptable and redeeming ways.
2. Ask Question
Art encourages people to ask questions, introspect, think about new ideas, experience fresh new perspectives and most importantly, it encourages us to take brief moments out of our busy lives to reflect on more than just the mundanities of our daily existences.
3. Improve Life
Art improves our quality of life. All you have to do is think about the difference between a room with bare walls and one with walls full of art. It enhances one’s home/work environment and improves quality of life. It can make a small room seem bigger, and a larger room cosier.
4. Brain Trill
According to research by Professor of Neurobiology and Neuroesthetics Samir Zeki, volunteers who looked at works of art such as Botticelli's Birth of Venus experienced increased blood flow to the region of the brain associated with being in love. He observed: “We have recently found that when we look at things we consider to be beautiful, there is increased activity in the pleasure reward centres of the brain... Essentially, the feel-good centres are stimulated, similar to the states of love and desire.”
Art can conjure memories from a specific period of time, like a trip abroad, milestone, etc. There's truth to art being in the eye of the beholder. Just as churches and other ritualistic meeting places serve a social function, so art events generate a sense of community around shared interests... People really talk about the art they see. Reading takes a long time and is solitary, whereas art fosters quick-forming imagined communities.
Art can be used to signify wealth, success or power and can even be used to intimidate. For example, imagine a CEO's office appointed with a big bold, vibrant, dynamic painting hanging on the wall directly behind their desk, and two imposing larger-than-life sculptures strategically placed around the office. Anyone who sits and meets with this individual must also contend with their art. An impressive or extensive personal art collection can be likened in microcosm to that of a great museum, and certainly increases the esteem of the owner among his or her peers. In fact, many of the great personal art collections either end up in museums or become museums in and of themselves.
For those who like to make profits, either directly or indirectly, know that many people decide where to spend their time (and money) based on the art that businesses have on display. For example, commercial spaces such as restaurants, hotels and meeting places often attract people because of their impressive art and interior decor.
8. Property Values Increase
Across the country and around the world, artists move into troubled or blighted neighbourhoods or parts of cities that have fallen on hard times and revitalise them with their artistry. Property values increase, new businesses move in and the overall quality of life in those areas improves immeasurably. Sooner or later, the public at large discovers these wondrous transformations, and in some cases, people actually travel great distances to visit these creative oases.
Art stimulates conversation, dialogue and interchange even between total strangers who might never otherwise say a single word to each other. It gives people permission to share thoughts, feelings, ideas and impressions that they might not ordinarily share. Children are fascinated by art. Art prompts children to ask questions and encourages them to fantasise, imagine, explore and expand their perceptions of reality, and to dream of unlimited possibilities. Art teaches children how to be creative and have fun with life and gives them permission to do so as well.
10. Environmentally Friendly
Art is environmentally friendly, energy efficient and easy to maintain. It does not increase global warming, use fossil fuels or need to be serviced on a regular basis, and it's certainly not just another expendable commodity destined for the landfill once it outlives its usefulness. Art never outlives its usefulness. In fact, it only gets better with time.
In other words, buying art and supporting artists serves far higher purposes than simply decorating your walls. Your ongoing support provides artists with the means to continue improving the quality of life for us all.
Reading list on the topic:
Playing to the Gallery: Helping Contemporary Art in its Struggle to Be Understood by Grayson Perry The Art of Buying Art: How to evaluate and buy art like a professional collector by Alan Bamberger Poor Collector's Guide to Buying Great Art Hardcover by Erling KaggeThe Value of Art: Money, Power, Beauty Paperback by Michael Findlay