Art Consultant at Work

What Does an Art Consultant do?

Some people buy art simply because they like it. Others buy art because they are collectors, or they may want a piece because it’s is done by a famous artist. Some people buy art as an investment.

An art consultant, like a consultant in any other field, is someone who advises you on art. They have education, knowledge appreciation for art and they also may help or conduct the transaction of buying art for you.

Where Do They Work?

Hiring an art consultant is hiring someone who can educate you on art. They help individuals and corporations alike. A good art consultant will know about the masters, what artwork of theirs may be coming up for sale and how much the piece is expected to sell for.

They also know all about new artists, who to keep an eye on, who is making waves in the art scene and whether they are worth the investment. Someone new in the art scene may be getting a lot of attention. When that happens, there is a rush to buy their work.

The consultant will know where to get these sought-after pieces. They may attend auctions, go to gallery openings or know the artists personally. They can help you negotiate the transaction for a piece of art you want.

Individuals and Groups

Art consults also work for bigger companies and corporations. Perhaps they are commissioned to find some interesting artwork for a new law firm or a hospital. They will be able to make sure the pieces are within their budget, appropriate for the setting and to make sure it is going to be a worthwhile investment.

Someone might prefer the old Dutch masters, or maybe they like a newer contemporary artist. The consultant goes out ahead to make arrangements for meetings, showings and negotiations.

Vast Knowledge

Art consultants will have a minimum of a bachelor of arts degree. Couple that with daily learning about art, artists and the world of art, they can tell you everything you need to know, and somethings you didn’t.

There is also a strong liaison relationship with the consultant, the buyer, and the artists or the gallery, or both. Often, established buyers have exclusive access to certain works, as consultants help buyers establish them in the art community.

It can be very difficult for individuals or a group to purchase art pieces that are highly desirable. Many galleries may only sell to people they already know, someone connected to the consultant or a high profile buyer, like a celebrity of some kind.

Hanging Artwork

Hiring a Consultant

If you are new to buying art or art collection, you need to talk to a consultant. You can’t just go into a gallery and buy something off the wall that you like. That may be the case in some smaller, local galleries, but almost always, there will be a consultant involved to make the transaction go smoothly.

They get paid by receiving a regular fee if they are someone you often use or they get a percentage of the sale of the artwork. They do the bidding at auctions, meet the artists for you and offer sound advice on those artists and they can introduce you to other people who work in the market.

When a consultant buys the artwork for you, they are often offered a small discount from the gallery. So, in essence, you are not paying them for their consultation. They sell you the art for the asking price and receive their payment that way. You don’t actually pay more for art when you buy through a consultant.

Whether you are buying one piece or looking to buy several pieces, the consultant will do all the work for you. They know where to go, how to find great work within your budget and who to talk to about it.

The Consultant Works for You

When you hire a consultant for advice or buying art, they are looking for the pieces that suit your tastes and needs, not theirs. Because they know so much about art, they are able to remove themselves from whether they personally like it or not and find what you are looking for.

They look at your space and ask about what types of works you want. You can go to galleries together and let them know the style, colors and themes you like best. They will use that information to find you the best pieces within your budget.

painter at canvas

3 Types of Important Abstract Art Styles

When you think of influential artists, who comes to mind? If you think about great artists such as Van Gogh and Monet, you're not wrong. These two artists are among some of the most well-known artists of all-time.

However, both of these artists had a style of realism that is only one part of art history of the last 150 years. They were considered abstract within their fields, but ultimately represented a type of art called realism. This term typically refers to art that sets out to depict specific objects or settings, maintaining the objects or setting as an integral part of the piece.

Though realism is a very common approach to making art, history has shown that there have been many other styles as well. For example, abstract art was a big topic in the 20th century, attracting controversy and revolutionizing the art world.

To help you learn more about the history of abstract art, here is a list of 3 important abstract art styles:


#1. Dada

In the early 20th century, many artists were interested in using their platforms to make critiques on society and culture. Art was a medium with which they could communicate their feelings about the world, allowing them to use it as a scathing political commentary machine.

After the horror that was World War I, many artists felt alienated by the society that was capable of causing so much destruction and death. In response to this seemingly absurd situation, a group of artists created a new type of abstract art called Dada. This new movement of artists would focus on making art that was as absurd as the life that they were living. For example, artists like Hugo Ball created abstract poetry that involved putting random words together while the visual artist Marcel Duchamp revolutionize the art world with his ready-made works. In particular, Duchamp's abstract notion of something being art simply because he labeled it so was hugely influential in the art world.


#2. Action Painting

When painting, the focus is traditionally on the canvas, with the artist delicately applying paint to carefully craft an image. However, the early 1900s also brought a lot of commentary on the process of painting, with many artists wondering what would happen if less focus was placed on the image being created and more on the actions that created the painting. By viewing the act of painting as more of a dance and prioritizing physical gestures, artists could create new types of abstract art that reflected the motion of the artist. Jackson Pollock is possibly one of the most significant action painters of the 20th century, throwing his paints around the canvas to create images that were just as complex as the society that surrounded them.


#3. Non-Objective Art

One of the biggest points made by all types of abstract art is that art does not necessarily have to represent certain objects. Instead of viewing art as a lens with which one can view something, modern artists viewed art as a way to experience something. Out of this art viewpoint came the style of non-objective art, a term sometimes used interchangeably with abstract expressionism. Both of those movements involved prioritizing art that made the audience view the work in a certain way.

The meaning of the work was removed from the image, instead encouraging audience members to focus on how the art made them feel. For example, artists such as Mark Rothko created paintings that very deceptively simple in their composition, usually only featuring a few colored panels. However, upon closer inspection it became clear that the works actually had a lot of detail in the way they were constructed. Though there were only a few colors in each piece, observers could see the detailed paint strokes that evoked a mood separate from any concrete narrative. Instead of having to focus on what the painting was about, people could focus solely on how it affected their emotions. These paintings also have a different effect on those who view them in galleries, as they are often large and intimidating in person.

Another prominent figure in Non-Objective Art was Wassily Kandinsky, a painter who utilized shapes to create paintings that were very emotional without having any perceptible narrative. Similar to the aforementioned Rothko pieces, Kadinsky's paintings expected audience members to not look for a story to follow, but instead the emotions that the painting made them feel.