Articles Posted in Art collection

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detroit photoWhen anyone – including a great city like Detroit – “successfully” emerges from bankruptcy, no one is usually happy how it turned out. This is clearly the case with the city of Detroit’s Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy, following Judge Steven W. Rhodes’ approval of the reorganization plan on November 7, 2014.

When Detroit sought bankruptcy protection in July 2013, it was up to its eyeballs in debt and other unfunded financial obligations. The run-up to the Motor City’s bankruptcy unfolded over decades, but can be boiled down to this simple formula: not enough money coming in and too much money going out. At jeopardy, among other essential city services like, say, police and fire protection, were the pension plans of the municipality’s retired and current employees, as well as the fate of the significant art collection held by the Detroit Institute of Arts (the “DIA”), whose works could arguably be sold and the funds applied to the city’s debt obligations. Continue reading

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3-24-08-050Many folks think of art collecting as a luxury hobby, reserved only to the privileged classes. But why should surrounding yourself with beautiful art be the sole province of the wealthy? It certainly doesn’t have to be.

Starting a collection obviously begins with acquiring that first piece, and since you will be living with it for a while, let it be something you love. Art as an investment is speculative, like any other investment, and except for well-known artists who have established their market value, it is difficult to predict whether any particular artist or work will appreciate over time. So I caution against collecting art as an investment strategy – let the art that you own be works that you love, and if those pieces appreciate in value over time, then so much the better!

With this notion in mind, I advise buying only original works of art. Where to start? Determine your tastes in art and stick to them as they evolve. Don’t buy art based on trends or what others say, unless you truly love it. Set a budget to start (how about under $1000). Then start looking for emerging artists who are beginning to attract attention from the press, from other collectors, from their peers. Do your homework – read the arts section of your local papers, attend gallery openings (new galleries will often present emerging talent before they become more well-known), visit art fairs, check out the websites of artists you like. Often you can find beautiful pieces by emerging artists for very reasonable prices (in the $100s, rather than $1000s). Avoid the status quo. Educate yourself, not only about the particular artist and his work, but about the particular piece itself. Consider investing in smaller works by emerging talents or by established artists (they’re more affordable than larger works). Remember: Warhol was not always Warhol. Continue reading