5 top tips for buying original art

Want to know what to look for when buying an original piece of art? ACHICA art buyer Angela Murray shares her expertise on what to consider...

1. Don't be afraid of buying art:

Even the top Cork St galleries in London are selling in the same way any retailer sells, it's just at a higher end. Start with the internet, which helps you look at lots of artists at once and do a little research online about them and their work. ACHICA, for example, has a curated collection of original pieces on a daily basis.

Artwork above and below: Jed Franklin on promotion at ACHICA from 6.30am July 14 2012

2. Set a budget

Knowing how much you want to spend before embarking on your spending spree means you won't make a knee jerk purchase and regret it every time you look at that artwork on the wall. Prints are a great place to start and a very affordable way to fill walls at home with art that not only looks great, but adds actual value to a collection you may be starting or adding to.

Above: I'd like to be...A Bobby on the Beat. I'd like to be A Champion Driver. Below: I'd like to be...A Creative Cook. I'd like to be...A Red Bus Driver. I'd like to be is on promotion at ACHICA from 6.30am on July 13 2012.

3. Ensure original or limited-edition works are signed or supplied with a certificate of authenticity

As a general rule a painting is usually a one-off whilst a screenprint, etching or silkscreen will normally be produced in a limited edition. Buying a limited edition adds value to your purchase and the first 1-5 of an edition are normally more expensive than the rest and as the edition sells out the whole series becomes more valuable. However, the joy of buying original art on ACHICA means you get the best price on every single edition number, which means the inherent value is already built in making the purchase a smart investment every time.

4. Buy something you like, not what you think you should like

Don't feel pressured into buying something you don't feel sure about. Art is subjective, so if your initial instinct is love then this is the piece for you. If you really don't warm to a piece of work but it's the coolest and most collectable artists of the moment don't be swayed, you will be living with this artwork for years to come so buy what you love and what inspires you to collect.

Image above: Portminster Sunset by Alexandra Dickens at ACHICA from 6.30pm on Sunday 15th July 2012.

5. Check out the degree shows and art fairs

Late summer is the best time to find a bargain or a future star at one of the art college degree shows with the bonus of seeing lots of different types of work in one space. This will help you get a feel for the kind of things available and perhaps will act as an inspiration for something new and radical and the bonus of meeting the artist is always a great opportunity to ask questions.

Image above: Dog in Pyjamas by Ewan John at ACHICA from 6.30am Sat 14 July 2012.

View more of the original Art selection at ACHICA here

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Emily Peck, Editor

View all posts by Emily Peck, Editor