Where To Start With Art Investment, How To Choose An Artist
April 2, 2020

Where To Start With Art Investment

How To Choose An Artist

The headline stories in art are always the high-profile, mega-million sales that break records and set new expectations. But are they always the most profitable?

Does selling a Picasso always get the best return for the outlay? Or should you invest in less established names? Of course, it all may depend on the depth of your pockets – but it can help to think of artists as falling into three broad categories:

1. Blue-Chip Artists

Household names like Picasso, Warhol, or Hockney, who command stratospheric prices. Their works deck the walls of national galleries. These artists guarantee an eye-catching sale, but not necessarily the highest percentage returns.

Warhol, Paramount, 1985


2. Established Artists

Well-known names in the art world and maybe feature in newspaper headlines. Their work sells strongly and can offer outstanding investment value. For example, Banksy's Balloon Girl prints cost £150 when they were first sold and now go for over £100,000.

Similarly, US street artist, KAWS', artwork has doubled in value in just a couple of decades. Satirical British artist, Harland Miller, has seem similar increases. While photographer David Yarrow consistently sells above his valuations at auction.


KAWS, The News Set, 2018 


3. Emerging Artists

To many, this is the most exciting category, but also the hardest to predict. The cost of entry is accessible, but you may need to wait. Patience is the name of the game here, hold on and watch the names (and demand) grow in popularity.

Take an artist like Bradley Theodore from the Turks and Caicos via New York, whose vibrant paintings GQ described as “chromatic thunderstorms – at once exhilarating, incontrovertibly powerful and ever so slightly chilling.” 

Bradley Theodore, Karl & Anna, 2018


Maddox Art Advisory can help get started

If you don’t know your Basquiat from your Banksy, how do you invest in a market where every asset is unique? Our specialist art investment consultancy provides clear, unpretentious art investment advice to help you navigate the sometimes dizzying landscape of the contemporary art market. Talk to one of our art advisors today by calling +44 (0)20 7781 9970 to find out more about investing in this exciting (and beautiful) asset, or request an Art Investment Guide here

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