|Nice, but will it go with the couch?|
Fifteen years ago when I developed an interest in art welding my sense of scale was reduced and I created smaller art pieces. Steel is still expensive but has an intrinsic value whether the art is good or not. It has value by the pound. It is always an investment because the materials themselves have worth and will cost more next year.
A year ago I discovered painting and am having a lot of fun with it but don't understand its value at all.
I have seen at garage sales what I consider perfectly acceptable works selling for less than the price of the canvass. Painting is the cheapest art since popcorn. You can paint some really big paintings for three dollars worth of paint. I enjoy it. It is fun. It is creating poetry without language and images without restraint, but I don't understand it.
There is a marketing to the sales of paintings that is like no other. Everyone knows that the nicest painting is on a thirty dollar canvas and contains three dollars worth of paint.
You can buy a thirty five thousand dollar car and the dealer might make $2,000 for his trouble. You can buy a house and the commission might be 6% but expect to pay 50% to the gallery where you buy your paintings. So, half the value of the painting is in hype. It is in the wine tasting, the opening night, the rubbing shoulders, the gala event! We buy a painting because we want a piece of this action, a taste of something we may dream about.
Good artists work their trade and ingratiate themselves to galleries that work for them. I am happy I discovered painting; it is a cheap way to fill the day but when you are used to selling art by the pound it is difficult to understand its value.
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