Contemporary collecting: Rise of the art adviser – Financial Times

CONTEMPORARY ART COLLECTING

Knowing what, and when, to buy can be a daunting task for any art enthusiast. The Financial Times investigates the rapidly growing field of art advisers, a profession where discretion and, above all, taste are the necessary qualifications.

Association of Professional Art Advisors.

Association of Professional Art Advisors.

The practice of art advisory is, of course, not new; for centuries, private collectors have enlisted scouts and sought consultation. However, as highlighted in this recent article published by the Financial Times, over the last decade the practice of advising art collectors on what to, well, collect, has seen dramatic growth.

Spencer Ewen of the London advisory company, Seymours, explains that art advisers appeal to collectors who are “time-poor but very wealthy and savvy” and that they “like the fact that we are independent from both dealers and the auction rooms.”

Established art adviser Thea Westreich notes that the desirability for art advisers can be partly attributed to social conditioning,

In the world of wealth, people are totally conditioned to have advisers in all aspects of their lives – from stylists for their wardrobe to their art. … They like to feel confident that someone is looking after their specific needs.

Art Radar readers, do you think art advisers are necessary or an accessory? Should collectors take a more ‘hands on’ approach to their process of acquisition or leave it up to a trusted expert? Post your comments below.

JM/KN/HH

Related Topics: gallerists or dealers, the business of art, collectors

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