“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”
- Thomas Merton.
What is Art?
Art is a highly diverse range of human activities engaged in creating visual, auditory, or performed artefacts— artworks—that express the author’s imaginative or technical skill, and are intended to be appreciated for their beauty or emotional power.
Here at The Lifestyle Guide "ART" always plays a big part in our everyday lives. From architecture to mother nature or entertainment to gastronomy there is incredible creativity and beauty all around us. Sometimes all we have to do is just pause for a minute, look around, and actually see it to appreciate it. Having said that we've all being cooped up in our houses over the past year or so and it's ignited a need to create an environment that inspires and delights us. Whether it be in the "home office" or our general living space we've all spent a lot of time within the confines of four walls. And so emerges a new search for and appreciation of aesthetics that we've not had the time or pleasure of enjoying before.
So with this, The Lifestyle Guide is delighted to bring you a monthly "ART" feature brought to you in collaboration with @young_art_collector. We came across @young_art_collector as we not only have similar interests within the art world but we love the idea of encouraging more of us to start collecting art, supporting local artists and visiting galleries. Art after all does have the power to change the world...
So let's dive straight in with an introductory quick-fire Q&A with @young_art_collector
A few years ago, the idea that I would be remotely involved with anything artistic was hilarious. You would struggle to find someone less interested and in tune with the world of art. I was dragged from gallery to museum by my family, friends and girlfriend. Eventually, however, the penny just seemed to drop. In truth, it wasn’t so much of an artistic awakening as it was a realisation that the art world was full of whacky personalities and a never-ending thrill ride.
I first started buying when I was still an A level economics tutor a few years ago. I was earning some decent money and the idea of investing in some prints was really appealing. I wanted to show something off to my friends when they came round for a beer. I found the idea of the process really captivating. The fact that someone had created something and then a gallery had sold it to me and here it hung on my wall was a really cool story to me. I started the Instagram account a few months later and by that point had bought a fair few prints by the likes of David Shrigley, Joe Webb and the Connor Brothers. It becomes a bit of an obsession as I’m sure anyone would vouch for.
Ive touched on this in the previous answer, but for me the most compelling thing about art collecting is the personalities involved. It’s such fun to use the Instagram to chat to aspiring artists, gallerists and dealers. Navigating your way through this is a lot of fun. I also love the idea of the collection as an organic thing. Something that develops, builds and on occasion, shrinks. It’s something thats alive in its own right. The hardest thing about being a collector, and there isn’t much thats hard as its a true privilege to be able to do this, is recognising when to buy and when to not. Maintaining a vision of what the collection should look like in the future, how the works balance with one another and how the themes work. Staying true to that vision is the most challenging element.
I wanted to create a platform for artists and collectors for a few reasons really. Mainly, I was getting increasingly frustrated with the preconception that art was only for the rich and the people ‘in the know’. This couldn’t be further from the truth. There is so much amazing stuff out there. I was guilty of being immediately suspicious of all galleries, for example, and assumed they were only out to rip me off. The reality is that there’s an amazing opportunity for people in their 20s and 30s to use art as a phenomenal investment. Not only that, but it's a great opportunity to meet cracking people and enjoy a really fun journey.
A lot of time spent on Instagram doing the hard miles! I love engaging with my audience on Instagram and particularly through the Q and A. It’s a great feeling to know that I’m managing to help people with their collecting needs!
I may regret this prediction in a few years or even months, but I really can’t see the NFT movement picking up too much steam. Or at least, if it does, it won’t ‘replace’ traditional art buying. I can’t envisage human beings ever not wanting to connect with art on a physical level. Nothing can beat the feeling of standing in front of a piece and properly interacting with it.
Who is your current favourite artist and why?
This is a tough one! I think I would have to go with Derek Fordjour of Josh Lilly Gallery and David Kordansky. I love Derek’s work because not only are the colours bright and the stories so interesting, but the pieces themselves have such an incredible texture to them. Their beauty really can't be understood through a photograph so when you get the chance, go and see them!
What is your most prized piece of art?
I’m fortunate enough to have a few that I prize dearly! I can't answer this without first referencing my gorgeous Who Cares Wins by Harland Miller. It was a momentous moment for my collection as it was the first time I was really able to purchase from a major gallery, in this case, White Cube. They were so sweet to sort me out with an AP and were incredibly helpful with me. My favourite work on paper is by Antonia Showering which I managed to purchase from the fantastic Union Gallery. I haven’t even seen it in person yet!
Any advice for people wanting to get into collecting art?
Honestly, just go for it. It’s a difficult process to get involved in as it obviously requires a little extra money but also an appetite for risk. The truth is never buy anything you don't absolutely love. If you love it, then you can’t lose as it doesn’t matter. That's the guiding principle of any collection!
Upcoming "must attend" shows?
The Julie Curtiss at White Cube will be phenomenal. I love Julie’s work and I am so excited to see it in person. Plus, I can’t not give a special mention to Union Gallery and the ‘Holding Hands’ group show!