Collecting vs. Buying Art — What Constitutes an Art Collection?

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Despite the popular belief, assembling an array or random art pieces does not automatically constitute an art collection. Bringing together a few contemporary abstract paintings, a couple of post-war prints and a Mexican antique masque still doesn’t mean that you have a collection on your hands. Though artistic in its nature, this accumulation of art objects represents merely a group of wonderfully diverse pieces acquired by an enthusiastic art buyer.

Unlike simple art assemblages, art collections are well-planned projects, established when collectors submerge themselves deep into the subject of their interest and spend years and years looking for very particular art pieces that can bring the entire narrative together.

So what is that fine line that separates regular art buyers from art collectors?

Every art buyer looking to turn himself or herself into an art collector has to overcome two obstacles. First, they have to select a central theme of their collection. Second, they have to be able to research the subject matter and then evaluate and decide which artwork to buy to turn their bulk of artworks into a comprehensive, curated story.

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