The Secret to Increasing the Value of Your Art Collection
If a friend wanted you to go and see a new band that you had never heard of, you would probably be a bit hesitant to buy a ticket without knowing whether they were any good. If your friend then said that the band had supported the Rolling Stones for their last concert at Wembley Stadium you would no doubt be far more willing to pay for a ticket, regardless of the fact you had never heard of them, because of their association with the Rolling Stones and the fact that they had played at Wembley stadium. The association with the Rolling Stones and Wembley stadium increases the desirability of the band thus adding value to their reputation. This phenomenon, which I have given the term ‘value by association’, is applicable to almost anything that has a monetary value including fine art. One of the most significant factors that adds value to an artwork is provenance, which is basically the different associations that one can make with the work such as the owners, exhibitors, sale details, etc. Of all the categories of provenance that I have just listed, the only one that the owner of an artwork can have any control over is where the artwork is exhibited.
By lending artworks in your collection to a major gallery or museum and having them exhibited you would be adding value to that artwork through association with a major gallery, museum or exhibition. Considering that art is a long term investment that usually involves a holding period of 7-10 years there is plenty of time to add to the provenance of artworks in your collection. To find out whether any artworks in your collection are suitable for exhibition in a gallery or museum all you need to do is start making some phone calls and sending some emails and you will soon know whether having one of your artworks exhibited is an option. Not every artwork is going to be suitable for exhibition, but for those that are suitable, there is no easier way to increase their value. You could also find yourself being invited into the socially elite circles of philanthropic art collectors!!!
Before lending your artworks to anyone you should make sure that the artwork is fully covered by the institutions insurance at all times and have any loan agreement checked by a lawyer before signing on the dotted line. You should also make sure that you are fully aware of how the artwork will be displayed, where the artwork will be exhibited, and if lending for a particular exhibition, whether the artwork will be exhibited at multiple locations.
**Nicholas Forrest is an art market analyst, art critic and journalist based in Sydney, Australia. He is the founder of http://www.artmarketblog.com, writes the art column for the magazine Antiques and Collectibles for Pleasure and Profit and contributes to many other publications.