The Price of Art

Here at the gallery we pride ourselves on signing up the best artists and selling their works at a reasonable and affordable price. We put talent first, out customers know that and it’s why they come back again and again. The same may however not be true for the art market at large. In a recent interview American artist Eric Fischl spoke of his disappointment at the way:  
“The price tag has replaced it [talent], and it’s certainly not a critical dialogue. It’s just something that’s a symbolic thing where it must mean the person who sells for the most money is the best artist. It’s a total false kind of critical economy and very destructive to the culture as well.”
This is a disconcerting trend although not one new to the world of luxury goods and not a trend which is entirely alien to myself either. We are all susceptible to snobbery of certain kinds and I think a lot of us do have an in built perception that quality equates to price. I personally pay through the nose for expensive meats and cheese purely on the basis that I wholeheartedly believe (with no real tangible proof) that paying more will mean I am getting a better product than the same cheese half the price in own brand packaging. Experience has taught me that this is often untrue, one bag of mozzarella bags is quite often exactly the same as another and yet I still go for the option. 
Price is still an important indicator though, it just shouldn’t be the only one as Fishcl indicates it has become. Price should reflect talent, ingenuity and experience rather than what is de rigueur that month, which will inevitably lead to a fickle and fluctuating art market. Collectors and those who hold themselves out as connoisseurs must to be willing to look past price and appreciate works that are perhaps under priced to help promising artists get off the ground and promote new talent.     
Just remember that the most important thing when buying art is that you love the piece you’re getting.

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