The Art of Buying Art

Tree-2The art one chooses for his or her home can reveal a lot about that person – so it’s important that you feel comfortable when choosing to purchase a piece of art. Like many other purchases, it is important that you get quality and value for what you are paying for. When you consider the price of a piece of art, it should not only be something that you will enjoy and continue to appreciate once you’ve brought it home, but you should also feel the price was a fair reflection of the quality, workmanship, style and your personal significance of the art piece.

Stereotypes and past experiences may have left you feeling intimidated, and how art is priced can be even more confusing. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Art is to be enjoyed, including the buying process. Many people want to begin acquiring or collecting art for their home or office but are intimidated by the art world. Many artists will welcome your interest in learning more about the materials and techniques they used, the creation process, the time and effort involved in each piece.

While all of these things help you gain and understanding and appreciation of the art, they are also your best clues to the price the piece will cost. It’s important that you feel you paid an appropriate price for your work of art. How much should you pay for a piece of art work? At it’s essence, art is valued by the buyer (not the seller) based on its style, emotion and the artists skill.

Feel free to ask questions – about the style of the collection, the inspiration for the piece, and the techniques and materials used. Talk to the artist about what you see in the piece, and ask what they envisioned as they created it, and whether they feel they have achieved that vision. In the end, the price you pay will have to be mutually agreed upon, but don’t be deterred if your ‘top price’ wasn’t agreed to – you should only pay what you feel the piece of art is worth. Experienced artists understand this to be a reality of their profession, and will not be offended.

Corporate Collectors’ Frequently Asked Questions

Who buys Ironworks’ sculptures and designs?
Ironworks’ patrons include experienced fine art collectors, corporations, decorators, fledgling art collectors and people who simply want something interesting to fill a space. Our clients come from across town, and across Canada and the United States.


Can you provide fine art that is appropriate for corporate environments?

We understand that businesses and corporations have suitability criteria that may be different from that of a private collector. Since Michael spends time with the buyer upfront to understand the goals and the culture of the corporation, he is able to offer a selection of visual styles customized to corporate needs and sensitive to a business environment.


Can you provide art that relates to our business and that our clients and employees will enjoy?
“Suitable” also means that the art meets your own business goals. We will tailor-make your proposal to whatever your needs are in terms of themes, imagery or stylistic preferences. Conveying your specific corporate vision through quality art is our goal.


How do we get started on this entire corporate art project?
Either via email, telephone or in person, we meet with your corporate representatives to focus on your art needs and goals. If you are uncertain of those requirements, this meeting will help to clarify them. From that meeting, we will proceed in designing a work fitted to your needs.


Can we present the proposed art project in-person to our art committee and key decision makers?
Depending on your wishes, we can meet and present proposed designs in a slide show at your offices or in print with original drawings.


Who takes care of expenses and logistics of setting, transporting and installing our corporate art?
Ironworks will handle all these services. Unless you request otherwise, these services are included in our overall budget proposal to your business.


Can you present proposals for large-scale and site-specific corporate art?
Ironworks is pleased to offer site-specific designs.


Does Ironworks make a bid or does our business provide the budget?
We will work however you prefer; of course, a general idea of your budget parameters is necessary in helping us to present a suitable proposal on a timely basis.


Who is accountable for the progress of our corporate art project?
Ironworks will see to every aspect of a corporate art purchase: from presentations, agreement and budget expectations, to the installation and documentation of each work purchased. Our proposal will outline the various expense categories so that you can anticipate how your art dollars will be spent. Art purchase costs include extras such as framing costs, transportation costs, installation costs, design costs, and fabrication costs.


Will our corporate art go up in price?
Contemporary art is always at the more speculative end of the investment spectrum. However, commissioning original art from a professionally known and skilled artist, increases the chances your art will appreciate in value and be considered “investment grade”.


Contact the Ironworks Arts Centre for more information or to book a consultation.




Commissioning Works

BoatAre you defining an area? Completing a space? Building on a corporate image? Accenting a room or property?

Commissioning an original  design with Any of the Centre’s artists is a collaborative and comforting process. Whether you’re a first-time art purchaser, an experienced art collector, or a professional designer, we give you the opportunity to express your artistic tastes and articulate a desired effect.

“I want clients’ to feel comfortable with the style and direction of the work, while coming to me to add that element of artistry, design and function. In working with both individual buyers and corporations, sharing that insight has always resulted in a much more fruitful and satisfying experience, for both myself and the client.”

We have been commissioned to complete many works of art for both corporate clients and individuals across North America, including Motorola, Labatt’s, Bank of Nova Scotia, Virgin Records Canada, Uvex-Toko Canada, and the City of Burlington among others. Various private commissions include Ski Resorts, Golf Clubs, Spas, Restaurant’s, Hair Salons, Libraries, Night Clubs, and Medical offices. His works have been featured in art galleries, shows and both local and national publications. An established artist, Michael maintains his studio in Clarksburg, Ontario where he oversees each stage of the design and fabrication process, completing unique sculptures and works of art for his clients.

Please contact Michael for more information about commissions.

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