How Do You Approach a Gallery or Dealer About Buying Art?
New to buying art? Here are helpful tips on how to find the right gallery or art dealer for you and then approaching them to purchase art.
Buying art from a gallery shouldn’t be a daunting task, though it may seem intimidating and difficult if you haven’t done it before. It will take some time, effort, and, of course, money. And although it might be a little nerve-racking at first, it should be an exciting experience for both you and the art dealer.
Here are some helpful tips on how to find the right gallery or art dealer for you and then approaching them to purchase art.
Learn How to Buy Art Like a Collector
If you’re new to collecting art, start by reading our blog posts on tips for starting your own art collection and how to buy art like a collector, where art industry pro and Redwood CEO Eric Smith offers his expert tips.
Find a Gallery You Love
Now that you are ready to purchase art, you need to find the right gallery for you. Begin by researching galleries and art dealers online. This will help you narrow down which ones offer the art you are interested in. If you have your heart set on a piece, you can also research the artist and see where their pieces are offered.
Take some time to explore the galleries that resonate with your style. Look for an art gallery with a robust online presence or one that has partnered with an online art-selling platform like Redwood’s Online Art Marketplace so you can explore the artwork without the stress of an in-person visit.
Ask the Right Questions
When visiting each one, either in person or online, make sure to introduce yourself to the owner or art consultant and ask questions about the type of work they carry. This will help you not only get to know the art they offer but also allow you to get to know the gallery’s staff.
Be sure to ask questions about the gallery and the art to learn more and show that you are interested in buying. Here’s a quick list of questions to keep in mind:
- How many artists do you represent?
- What is the price range of the artwork?
- How long have you been here?
- Who is the artist of this piece?
- Where is the artist from?
- What is the story behind their work?
- How long have you represented them?
- Are they local?
If you have fallen in love with a particular artist’s work at the gallery, don’t be afraid to ask if they have any other pieces not currently on display. You never know—your next favorite piece could be waiting for you in their back room.
Find Out the Price
Once you have decided on the piece you are ready to purchase, let the dealer know you are interested. They will then begin to talk price with you. Some galleries will not negotiate on the price; others will. So be sure to ask.
Enquire About Home Visits
You can also ask if they do home visits, where they will bring the artwork to your home and show you how it will look and how to display the piece. This is a great way to forge a relationship with the gallery. They will get a chance to see your decor and available wall space as well as get a feel of your overall style. This gives them the opportunity to offer you more pieces that fit your space and taste. It never hurts to ask if they will hang the art!
Once you’ve purchased your piece, you’re well on your way to becoming an art collector.