Art is Back - Gee, I Didn't Know It Went Somewhere

  • October 14, 2011 21:07

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Interior Scene, signed with monogram in an amazing frame
Albert Rousseau, street scene

I heard that the other day.  "Art is back".  It was said so matter of factly that I nodded my head as if to say, "Yes".  But really, where did it go?  Or maybe the question is not where but for whom.  It appears that the New York interior designer crowd are discovering or re-discovering painting.  They are touting the benefits of owning art.  How a painting can complete the room.  And this is pushing sales.


I've always thought that a painting can make the room.  It sets the tone and gives you something to work with in designing the remainder of the space.  But more than that, it gives to something to talk about and think about.  Take a moment and look around your home or office or wherever you may be right now reading this.  What do you see on the walls?  Surely there are paintings.  And depending on where you are, they are either your taste, or quite far from it.  In either case you are responding to those works.  And that is what any great painting does - elicits a response.


But back to that statement of fact - Art is Back.  For me, it had never gone anywhere.  Through economic boom and bust, I live with art.  No, you can't eat it or use it as a roof over your head, so at times it may seem frivolous, but for me it is always a necessity.  I've gone hungry before selling a work of art that I love.  And this is what separates art from other things in the antiques business.  This is why my business is called Heather Karlie Fine Art and Antiques.  For me, those paintings get top billing.  And now that very influential crowd is feeling the same way.  As interior designers are a large part of my business, I am fascinated by how trends ebb and flow.  

Henri Burkhard, nude at her bath


This being said, I find it best to stick with buying what I would want to live with as my rule.  I always feel good about this because I can always speak with great emotion about whatever I might be selling.  The client can see true appreciation.  Whether it's an Abstract piece or an Old Master portrait, buying what you love is the first order of business.  My clients can see a varied taste in my inventory, and that is what draws them in (I think).  


I'm working on a new display idea for a bunch of paintings that I've had to store.  Kind of a wall of art.  I had been simply replacing a sold painting with one from the storeroom, but one at a time doesn't show enough of the idea.  It's time to let them all be on the wall at the same time.  So who is pushing the trend?  The buyers by validating your purchases.  The sellers by reaching deep into stockpiles of inventory.  A little bit of both.


I want to thank that man who clued me in to the trend.  I'll be celebrating art along with you.  For me, this celebration goes on for a long, long time...

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