“New money tends to buy new art. After a while, as they become more comfortable—both with their money and collecting—they start looking at older works” -Inge Reist, director of the Center for the History of Collecting.
Article by Ralph Gardner.
New York City has such an abundance of great museums and blockbuster exhibitions that it’s easy to overlook some of the smaller players. And by smaller, I mean mostly in size, not in quality: The artworks hanging at the Frick Collection or the Morgan Library are the equal of anything at the Met.
In some ways, the viewing experience is actually superior with a smaller collection. For starters, the art is sometimes housed in what used to be the absurdly rich collector’s mansion, which still retains many of the trappings of his or her wealth, occasionally peculiar taste and social-climbing prowess. And the café or restaurant usually isn’t bad, either.
Also, the crowds tend to be smaller. Unlike at the Metropolitan Museum or MoMA, where on an average busy day it becomes easy to hate the rest of the human race as you jockey with fellow art lovers for post position in front of a popular Vermeer or Picasso, at the Frick or Morgan you can often have a world-class El Greco or Ingres all to yourself.
Finally, there’s the snob appeal. So what if you’ve visited the Met in New York, the National Gallery in London or the Louvre in Paris? Busloads of people, many of whom don’t know a da Vinci from a Diego Rivera, do that every day. But if someone asks your favorite thing about Paris and you answer “the Musée Jacquemart-André,” they’ll credit you with sophisticated taste and a superior intellect. so what if you spend most of your life in front of the TV watching “Seinfeld” reruns?
Read full article WSJ – The Art of Collecting
Anaïs Laurent says
I find it stimulating and highly interesting to find a snob appeal in small exhibitions… It all depends on where they are and the artists exhibited, as well as the press support – without it you can have the most incredible artist and no public.
The founder and director of several small galleries over the years, with artists whose work is truly unique, the difficulty is not in finding good art but in finding a good, knowledgeable public capable of taking the quantum leap of faith in the works exhibited, not just for investment but also for sheer enjoyment and the change to a more positive environment. What you buy is a measure of who you are and what your tastes are – do you follow the crowd or do you strike out and discover new works by artists who may not yet have the “name” attached to their works through lack of superior marketing techniques?