Price of ART, once again

scents off senses

Standing on art markets is at the best of times a challenge, but this time, well let me tell you about it.
Scent of Seven Senses, is a beech wood sculpture made in 2012, and measure 39 x 29 x 7 cm.
It is very smooth even the wood is hard and finished with oil and wax.
This sculpture was used on the last art market as a bit of a try out to see how people value art.
People were asked what price they put on it after telling how long it took to make and that it came from a solid piece of wood.
All sort of interesting discussions came. It didn’t matter how long it took the artist to make it matters what people feel it is worth. Never saw this attitude elsewhere in the commercial market, but ok. People in shops etc usually don’t ask you what is it worth for you, so lets listen.
The prices people gave was and is well under the minimum wage.


It made me think. The work artists do has little to no value for people? Why is that attitude? How did it develop?
Over the last 21 years i have seen the art market changes and not for the benefit of the artists nor the customers.

A little stroll over the art market made me realise that most people there are not registered traders. It doesn’t mean they are not artists but they seem to sell for a different reason than making a living from it. Once you earn money with your trade you must register in The Netherlands, not when you do it voluntary (as a hobby).

The following article shows how this has been an ongoing problem for artists. You might use the online tools to put the fair price on your art, the fact stays that most people on the markets or in galleries will not pay it.
An alternative is seen on many art markets, the fast art, the faster you make it the cheaper you can sell it.
Yep, plenty of fast art around on the art market i attended, but wood can’t be easy made into fast art. DaBeArt has some small sculptures for a lower price, which we mainly sell on markets. It is an illusion that people will see the difference between the fast art and the slow art.

When talking to artists you see the frustrations we have and share. It seems to be a commercial artist you must leave your artistic expression behind and must adjust your skills to speed.
No more concessions from us artists in this case. The booked and paid art markets will be made into an entertainment for the artists not the passing public.
Here in The Netherlands they have a new name ‘verdien model’ the model for earning money. That model might no longer be art for DaBe

It made me think, will people be willing to pay for the Land Art Forest? ? ?

Perhaps give it an other name without art in the name? Perhaps not?
The aim of the Land Art Forest is to give something back to nature without a commercial aspect.
Still i need to eat and drink and also pay the rent and all the rest, is that too much to ask?

flow 9 it is all in your head



4 thoughts on “Price of ART, once again

  1. This is an age old problem. But in the case of art markets, I see it as a difference between artists and artisans, or arts and crafts. A conceptual artist doesn’t really belong at a public market since they are not likely to be understood and valued there. The arts and crafts at a market are generally more practical or nearly mass produced – as you say, for quick money and simple enjoyment.
    That’s why there are galleries and museums where things are curated and there’s education and/or conceptual information included with the artwork that’s shown.
    I believe conceptual art and ‘slow art’ has intrinsic value beyond money. It’s an expression of individuals and of culture. It’s to be cherished. Unfortunately, unless such an artist can gain patronage of gallery owners who have money to champion them and raise the value through education and reaching the ‘audience’ who will pay the higher monetary value, an artist generally has to reduce the time they can spend on art to do some type of artisan work.
    When I was young and did much visual art, I sold in a small co-op gallery and had occasional monetary success with my art, but I chose to be a picture framer so I could enhance my art pieces, add value to them, and make a living at the same time.
    Now that my art is mostly expressed through writing books, I also have a job as an insurance agent, and I do some freelance formatting of manuscripts and cover design production to supplement the income from my literary art.
    It’s a shame in some ways since ‘pure art’ is an amazing thing, and having an artist need to spend time on the mundane reduces what they can uniquely add to the world. But it seems to be the way of the world. Perhaps the struggle makes the art richer (though not the artist) in the end.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Monetary value on the artistic expression is hard to put in real numbers. The hours spend could be a real value calculator, however most people don’t see this. For the first time since 20 years the need for an other job becomes unavoidable, it is the reality for most artists.
      The artistic expression without the monetary pressure could be a real relieve and might open new ways. The exposition in November will be like that, none of the work will be for sale.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think you face a problem all artist face. The roller coaster of trends and fads and fast art is not what makes art that lasts, makes a statement, and is relatable for future generations. Keep the focus. Be an artist.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Every artist deals with this in their own unique way, sadly most around 80% rely on an other income.
      For years DaBeArt belonged to the 20% from now on we shifted to the other site and that makes us frustrated and sad.
      My focus is as blur as can get but that can create great images. *_*

      Liked by 1 person

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