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Modern Art as an Investment

There is a great deal of interest from Art collectors about buying modern art for Investment reasons. The last ten years has seen the art prices of modern art steadily increase in value and certainly there are plenty of art enthusiasts who have bought and sold art work by modern artists and sculptors and made a profit. However, the advice from Red Rag Gallery has always been to buy modern art for enjoyment rather than a pure art investment. Realising investment in modern art is not always and there are costs involved if paintings or sculptures are sold at auction.

The strong rise in the value of modern art, paintings and sculptures has been for the art works of both living and dead artists. This has resulted in greater interest in art values and acquiring modern art pieces which might appreciate in value. For those modern art enthusiasts who are also interested in values here are some hints and tips from Red Rag Bath Art Gallery about investing in Modern art.

Understand the art market
The art world is just like any other market in that it is not easy to predict and understand. However as with other investment decisions the more you learn about the art market, the greater are the chances of making a satisfactory investment on modern art. It is essential to commit a significant amount of time researching the artists and modern art market.
Learning about the Modern Art market in which the Red Rag Bath Gallery operates, which is living artists, is a major undertaking. If the sector of interest increases from modern art from living artists to the art pieces of deceased artists the task becomes huge. It is advisable to focus on specific art niches and get to know as much about the subject as possible.
Apart from regular research through art books, magazines and the Internet try to visit as many art exhibitions and modern art galleries as possible. When visiting art galleries ask gallery staff and participating artists about the specific art niches of interest to you.

Focus your Interest in Art
It is always a good idea to choose an art subject which you like. Doing this means you are more likely to commit the time needed to understand the particular art market. Even then deciding exactly what you are looking for is not easy. This is because the art market is so large and diverse. Ideally you should limit your initial art search to a manageable size. This varies from person to person but even if you decide to concentrate on living British modern artists more segmentation needed. For example: Landscape, Portrait, Marine, Figurative, Realism and Conceptual Art; Type of Paintings ' Oil, Acrylic, Watercolour or Drawings.
Determining what art you are looking for will take a long time but if you are serious about investing in art it is essential to know and specify your niche.

Understand what drives art values
Determining the value and potential value of art is extremely difficult. But the factors which can influence prices for artist's work are easier to identify. These include: popularity and reputation of an artist; appraisals by critics and art commentators; quality of the art pieces; the subject; previous buyers of the artist especially if they are established art collectors or celebrities

Buy the best you can afford
It might be appealing to purchase modern art works from young unknown artists before their paintings surge in value ' but the chances of success and often quality of the modern art make this a high risk strategy. Historically the best art work by established or emerging artists has appreciated more in value then inferior work by the same artist. So buy the best art you can afford ' preferably by the best (proven and established) artists.

Buy Quality
It is always pays to purchase good quality art with original framing. All Red Rag Modern Art comes direct from the artist's studio ' but if you are looking to purchase period art always look for any damage. Paintings and sculptures can be repaired but values are better for paintings and sculptures in pristine condition.
If you are not purchasing modern art from living artists ' try to purchase art with a documented history. A good provenance will cost more but the re-sale value and desirability is significantly increased over art works without history. This is particularly the case if a painting has an interesting history or is of significance in the artist's career.
A key quality stamp needed for modern art investment is the artist's signature. So always make sure when you buy art that it is signed or initialed. Without it selling the art work may become more difficult.
Finally remember to keep the paperwork for art purchases. They form an important part of any painting or sculpture's history which will be of interest to future art investors.

Buy the right subjects
Artists can paint hundreds of paintings during their lifetime. An artist style and the subjects painted may vary enormously. Buying art for investment means you need to know what are typical benchmark paintings for each artist. For example: a leading Modern British portrait painter may have painted many subjects, but a painting of the King or Queen is likely to be more valuable than a portrait of the artist's next door neighbour, or of a Landscape painting by the same artist. You will also probably find Oil paintings by an artist to be much more collectible and valuable than watercolour paintings by the same artist.

Buy at the right time
Like other markets the Art market has highs and lows and there are fashions. As an art investor you need to cautious and know the state of the art cycle. For example: if an artist is continually in the headlines with prices rising and you have one of his or her paintings ' then it maybe time to think about selling it. You should also be wary about purchasing another art piece by the artist. Right now there is huge interest in Modern Art. And, the wider Modern art market continues to see increasing prices ' buyer beware!

Buy Small Modern Art works
Modern paintings by an artist on a price per square inch are always more than larger paintings by the same artist. This is all about art market demand. Put simply there are more art buyers with physical space in their art collection for small paintings than larger paintings. In terms of realising your art investment this can be a key factor

Finally, look after your art Investment ' it pays to look after your Modern Art. In the long term attrition is one of the prime reasons why paintings and art sculptures increase in value. Over time fewer art items survive and those that have survived usually deteriorate. If you look after your Modern Art investment and take care of it, then it will fetch more than the average in the future.

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