Monday, April 12, 2010

Why People Colllect CERTAIN Types of PAINTINGS--How Art STIMULATES

I have sold antique paintings and prints on eBay for about 8 years now, or I should say I try to sell them , as selling art is a difficult collectible to sell.
But I love art, believe that no home or office is complete without it.
I was sitting in my art History class that my local museum was having a few weeks ago, I started doodling in my notebook as I typically do, I like to draw or I especially like to consider things to write about for this blog. Then I started thinking of all the kinds of paintings I have sold, and what type of people buy what types of art that I have sold. I also am out and about buying art to sell, and I watch what people are attracted to.
Dr. Gina ( not ), will tell you what she has hypothesized .
I would bet money on most of this, but I am not a betting woman...but I would bet you if I was.
I believe people buy Art that evokes a feeling , spurs their dreams, their aspirations, their memories and their hopes. Many pieces of Art are escape avenues, we look at them and they can transport us to another place, or time.
Buyers sometimes can ' see ' themselves in the Art . They buy something that they can relate to in some way, whether it be physical, emotional, mental or spiritual.
I believe Art can create ' life ' in a room.
I believe it can feed your heart and soul.
Ok...enough of the jibber-jabber...because I am quite passionate about Art...I could go on and on.
Let me explain that I will be describing this by using TYPES ( or subject ) or Art , NOT Styles of Art. I will be discussing portraits, landscapes, still lifes, nudes, etc. NOT Impressionism, Realism, Modernism. Simply the most popular types of Art in the paintings I have sold.
Here we go:

This is actually my top category of sales, with landscapes right on the heels of it. The buyers I have had buy portraits are a very interesting group of collectors. They usually focus on a time period, Renaissance, Victorian, Art Deco, Art Nouveau, Modern , etc. Most of the portraits have to be beautiful women or handsome men to sell fast. Most of the portraits of women are bought by women and most of men portraits are bought by men. At least 80 % of the time. Woman rarely buy men's portraits , but men do buy portraits of women. Renaissance art or Old Master's Art is a large category that sells extremely well, but usually cost-prohibitive for me to buy for resale. People who collect that type of Art are high -end collectors who appreciate details and high quality in their Realism artwork. 
I personally love Old Master's Art.

Landscapes are a big seller, if they are well done , they are typically bought by male buyers who seem to want to see the vastness of a scene or they are outdoorsmen, fishermen, hunters,  and appreciate what the painting reminds them of. Landscapes with lakes or rivers sell especially well, with moonlit reflections, and mountains. I would say 80 % of my buyers here are men, 20 % women. These buyers want to bring the outside, inside. I have sold many landscapes to people that have mountain homes or vacation homes.
This is  a surefire seller typically, almost 80 % male buyers, 20 % female. They all love the sea, or were seamen, were in the navy , or love to sail. Some live on beaches , some just remember family vacations at the shore. Seascapes with ships ( Marine art ) sell better than plain ocean views in the paintings. I have sold most Marine paintings to men that are also history buffs.

I have sold gobs of vintage and antique florals, which are paintings of flowers. Some people call these still lifes, but I will use that term for objects on a table that are typically flowers and other items combined. Florals usually only have a grouping of flowers in the painting. The most popular seller is roses, after that pansies. Victorian Sunday -Artist style is the most popular. Gardeners are big floral collectors, wanting to have flowers around them  all year long. These are typically bought by female collectors about 80 % of the time, while men comprise the remaining 20 %. Another very pleasant group of collectors to sell to.

I have sold many nudes, I collect some nude portraits of women. It is a sensual Art type and a lot of serious art collectors collect nudes. It is a very difficult technique to master, painting the human form with it's flesh tones, blended curves of a figure...and to do so without harsh lines. True nude collectors like the beauty of form without the overt lewd glorification of sexuality in their art. Most popular are back views and draped views of a nude figure. Full frontal nudes are less popular and difficult to sell or display in a home...especially in America. Europeans appear to have less qualms about nudity in their Art. The funny thing about the buyers of nudes , is that 98 % of male nude portraits ( not talking about Old Masters art ), is collected by gay men. While 75 % of nude female portraits are sold to straight women. I always thought that was ironic, and amusing..but ask other art dealers who specialize in nude portraits and they will confirm it.
Again here, mostly beautiful women and handsome men sell best as nudes. This type of Art most probably stimulates the sensual side of a collector , and they appreciate the beauty of the human form.

 This type of Art Sells less than other types, way less in my opinion, BUT...the interesting thing about this is that when I do have a really good still life, it sells for a good amount of money. They have to be very well done, and they have to either be Old Master's style, Victorian or Modern sells best. These are the fruit and wine on a table, the flowers and food on a tabletop, or game paintings.
Intellectuals like this  type of Art very much.

This is a pretty strong art field, but to be able to buy the really old Americana is difficult and cost-prohibitive for me usually. Paintings of children and pets , that are signed and dated are highly sought after.
People who like this type of Art are typically patriotic and often religious. They appreciate the ' heart ' of the artist and the charm of the piece first and foremost. They also collect from certain geographical areas. Like someone who is from New York will buy folk art from an artist who lived and worked in the New York area.

These are paintings of animals, with DOG paintings being the highest collectible category and horses and birds following in second place. Cats are after them all.
These are obviously collected by someone who has the animal they want portraits of.

This category of Art sells less, and for less than any paintings that I have sold. The only exception appears to be Venice , or some Italian cities in Art. Most probably because they were painted quite often in the Renaissance time period , and buyers like the ' look ' of them. Other city and architecture paintings are slow or poor sellers. Urbanites collect this type of Art.

There you go, my opinion on why people buy certain types of Art and what sells best.
Art allows us to bring our dreams, feelings and hopes into our homes as tangible evidence or proof of our very selves.
It helps us validate our feelings through the Art we choose to buy and display.

I hope this may help you in some way understand why people buy certain types of Art, and encourage you to buy the Art that ' feeds ' you.
Buy what your heart tells you to, what calls to you.
Many blessings and happy Art-hunting !

" Jesus saith unto him, I am the way , the truth , and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by me. " John 14:6

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