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Why do people buy art?

Have you ever asked anyone why they bought art? I don’t mean in a negative way, like “why the hell would you buy that?” I mean, ask them sincerely why they purchased that particular piece of art.

You’ll be surprised at the responses you’ll get from art buyers.

You pretty much have two types of buyers. Some buyers buy completely on a whim. Then the second group actually went looking for the art.

From those two types of buyers, you have overlapping subcategories. I say overlapping subcategories since they don’t necessarily fit into the two primary groups.

Investors

I wish I remember which member of Motley Crue invested in art. I remember the days when a google search actually brought relevant data. Nowadays, you search for an answer to your question and you get a bunch of bullshit.

Anyways, I remember reading about one of the members of Motley Crue who would buy hundreds of thousands of dollars of art every year. And then proceed to have art auctions. And actually make a lot of money!

Yes, you can buy art as an investment. Of course, keep the pieces you’re in love with. But part with the rest.

An up and coming artist may slaughter the stock market. Whereas a good stock investor will make 10% or more a year, art can go up infinitely.

I recorded two songs with David Lichtenstein. His father Roy had a painting sell for $56 million, another sell for $95 million, and another sell for $165 million. Imagine if you owned any of those paintings! So far, seven of his paintings have sold for over $10 million.

Lovers

Ah, one of my favorite words. I’m a hopeless romantic. I think all good artists are.

Some folks just love collecting art. They fall in love with a piece of art. Then they buy it.

These people often have so much art that they have to end up taking a piece down in order to put the new piece up. There’s literally no room on their walls.

I love meeting people like this. They’re passionate about not only art, but also life. You could see the smiles in their eyes. They’re fun to talk to, fun to be around. If I could pick one type of person to hang with, it would undeniably be them.

What motivates them? I have no idea. I wish I had that much enthusiasm! These are my favorite people in the world.

Trend setters

This may have a negative connotation but it really shouldn’t. Some folks love to predict trends. Others set them.

Artists create art. However, if there’s nobody showing it off, then the art will eventually disappear and the artist will be forgotten.

Trend setters find a style they love. Then they push it out to the world.

This is yet another reason not to hate your competition. Imagine, you and someone with a style similar to yours getting both picked up by the same trend setter. You not only both make money, you both make the news. The trend setter helps you both succeed. Then, you’ll see other artists try to emulate you both, only further enhancing your artistic portfolio since a collector will often look for influences.

Businesses

I’ll never get picked up by a business. They’re not my market. Yes, you guessed why. I don’t have anything that’s necessarily safe for work. Unless you work in the Playboy Mansion.

I don’t like “business art” anyways. It’s more often than not sterile. It looks like business art.

In these parts, business art tends to be politically correct. “What’s the latest virtue signal? We need to display that!” That art more resembles a bad parody of itself than real art.

Disney though has some pretty good art up. Yes, I know it’s cool nowadays to hate on Disney. But whenever I see their art they got up, I have to compliment the artists. I say this because I wish other companies would recognize the importance of real art, not the sterile shit that most have hanging up.

Commissions

From the Renaissance to the 19th century, artists depended on commissions. Rich people commissioned artists. That’s just what they did.

Rich people back then were cultured. They often spoke tons of languages and could play musical instruments. They knew, and loved art. So much different than today’s rich people, especially the Silicon Valley stereotype.

The Medici’s funded the Renaissance. Tchaikovsky had Madame van Meck. Goya had Charles IV. I’ve seen the infamous picture of that royal family in real life. Oh, and Tchaikovsky was the very first person to play in Carnegie Hall.

Classy people commission art. They’re some of my favorite people as well. It’s one thing to take a family photograph. You really want to have style? Have your family painted.

Friends and family

And lastly, you have people who know the artist personally and have strong relations with them. They’re the easiest to sell to since they know firsthand the motivations of the artist.

I won’t go into details here as I’d be stating the obvious. You know the artist. You may have even commissioned the work yourself.

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