Art on Display

Tonight, I’m auctioneering Disjecta’s annual fundraiser to benefit their curator in residence program. I’ll be auctioning off 20 or so pieces of art live, with another 30 or so available through the silent auction. This is the fifth year I’ve done it and it’s always a lot of fun.

I love auctioneering, I love Disjecta, especially now that they’re in their new space, and I love the art they curate for their auctions. This year my wife is actually in one of the photographs. A few years ago I walked home with another photograph taken during a party at our house.

Every year, in fact, I walk home with a piece or two. We’ve also started to buy a piece of art from a gallery here and there. And friends who are artists have given or traded work with us. And then there’s the recent explosion of affordable posters and prints. Not to mention the occasional estate store treasure.

Slowly but surely I’m becoming an art collector.

It’s gotten to the point where we don’t have enough wall space to showcase everything we own.

And it got me thinking, isn’t there a better way to honor our art then by keeping half of it leaning against each other in our basement?

The online art gallery I’m most familiar with is 20×20. It’s a great concept, twice a week or so they release two or three images from an artist. They sell a bunch of prints in a small size, some in a medium size, and just a few in a large size. It’s art for everyone.

I bought a piece a few years back. A photograph of a baseball that was buried in dirt so long it now looks like a planet, especially floating against a pink background.

But how about a gallery where people can display the art they already own?

I’m imaging an online platform where you could upload images of your entire collection. Maybe it’s for anyone. Maybe it’s by invitation only, for collectors within a particular community. But the idea is it would showcase a person’s entire collection so that anyone, or just friends if you wanted to kept it private, could check it out.

I think this would benefit collectors in that they could see their work all in once place. I bet themes would emerge. Some pieces might seem out of place. As art is increasingly available to preview or even buy online new pieces could be judged as far as how well they fit into a collector’s existing collection.

Perhaps there could even be a part of the site that allows users to size their art in relation to each other and in relation to walls and rooms in their house. Imagine if this site could help you not just see your entire collection, but plan how to hang it without having to drag the sometimes heavy, sometimes awkward, sometimes delicate pieces from room to room.

Assuming the collections were public, collectors and potential collectors would benefit from seeing each other collections. Imagine searching collections that have work from an artist you like. Chances are those collections would also have lots of art you like from artists you’ve never heard of before.

Which is why artists would love the site. Rather then selling a piece of art to a collector, only to have it be seen by their guests alone, these images are suddenly out there, being seen and appreciated by new audiences.

Could be cool. I’d use it. Maybe it’s a something Flickr or Instagram needs to get on.  Or even Google or Facebook. As with any of the ideas I post here maybe there’s already something out there I’m not aware of. Let me know if that’s the case.

In the meantime, if you’re in Portland and free tonight, come by.

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One Response to Art on Display

  1. I know exactly what you mean I’ve been collecting work by other artists and I’ve run out of space in my home too. Sometimes reselling stuff on ETSY and Ebay works but I keep hoping that we’ll move into a larger space.

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