Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Discount please.

OK. here we go again. I'm a little confused. Who sets the price to the value of a painting? I see an abstract acrylic painting versus an oil painting with detail..... The oil painting is selling for $300 or so...and the abstract painting is selling for $3000 dollars. No detail. minimal time spent creating this piece. Very little effort on the artists part. I know the artist. He laughs all the way to the bank. On the other hand the same artist paints a very original piece which took hours in fact a week or so to complete. He laboured over the piece yet it will only be offered for $300 or so. I don't understand. Why such a difference? I see this as a re-occurring theme. I always see the difference so dramatic. I go to art fairs, galleries, online galleries and websites offering pieces direct from the artist....the modern, pop and abstract art are offered higher than the detailed pieces. Can someone explain this to me. Am i naive? Why? Ok. Maybe I am not the judge or jury of this appraising racket but someone must be high? Ok. I'll shut up. Just an observation on my part. My point is an abstract piece flows and can be done rather quickly or not depending on the texture if any involved in the piece. Some pieces are more involved than others. They are detailed compositions landscapes or portraits or themed pieces that will take hours and days and once in a while weeks depending on the physical and creative process involved. In my logic the piece that you labour over should net you more than the piece that is done rather quickly. Ok. there is my point. I hope we are all on the same page here. Now someone please explain. I know my answer. What is your take. I know I have a rather large following now here on this blog. I am so thankful for the following. Please can someone please post an answer to this? Some of you experienced? or some non artists with a wonderful insightful opinion that I would hold very dear respectfully?! Hello?


  1. I'm not an artist, I handmake cards. I'm guessing that abstract painting appeals to today's world as it looks crisp, bold, clean and modern?

  2. many abstract works take just as much thought effort and technique,as a realistic work. Some even take more, because there is a creative element involved that isn't required with realistic work. I personally do both types. thoughts: people are buying works that make them feel certain things, subjectively, rather than objective analysis of the work, and some people don't have confidence in their work selling for large amounts, and don't price them properly. People will pay what you charge -- the artist, considering many factors, determines the value of their work. Investors are willing to pay for the higher priced works because of the perceived increase in value. But mainly, you can't perceive abstract work as not taking as much effort, skill, or technique as realism, being an artist that creates both types, I believe quality of work has much more involved than just style. The new and undone is always going to turn heads...

  3. I have to agree with Becky. Abstract art that appears to have been quickly slapped together might actually have many different versions of the painting underneath. The process of abstract art can be a long, intuitive one as the artist tries to find the right colours, balance, feelings, etc. Also, when people ask how long it took to do a painting, you could say your whole life! All of your experiences and knowledge have gone into that piece. You could also argue that detailed realistic work is less creative because it`s more about the technical application of paint. But that`s a whole different debate!

    I think what it comes down to is an artist`s perception of their own value, as well as what the market will bear. As an artist becomes more experienced and more credible, has more shows and develops a reputation, they can price their work higher, regardless of subject matter.

    I also work in abstraction and realism, and finding the right price is one of the most difficult parts!

  4. I have to agree with both of the other comments. I have for example 2 abstract paintings. 1 took me 5 weeks to do. That one is posted on my blog and the other not posted yet, took me 6 long hellacious months. It turned out beautifully. as far as pricing I have no idea what I would put on either one but since painting them was a long and arduous process I know it would be a small fortune.