Emma Wingfield  27 Feb, 2017   Stories, Industry Insights, Designer, art advising, art consulting, art search, contemporary art, Design, interior design art consulting, New York City, online art world, hospitality design, Hotel, hotel design, independent artists, interior design, interiors, Art x Culture

Art is exciting and we all get a little carried away sometimes. Who doesn't want to put on their art advisor hat and build a huge, one of a kind, multi-medium art collection? Unfortunately that's not always practical so we compiled tips to help you avoid the online art rabbit hole and keep your art search simple and on track for your interior design project.


Oli McAvoy, Caution Ahead

1. Start your art search on track

Understand what you want versus what you need
We all want a huge, one-of-a-kind, multi-medium art collection. But narrowing down your preferences to the necessities will help guide the process. Is there one focal walk in need of a large scale painting? Or a corner that will pop with a unique sculpture? Expanding your art package is simple, but removing options will be heartbreaking.


Know your (rough) budget
Art comes in all shapes, sizes, and prices. Before you know it you may have found the perfect piece for an imperfect price. The fastest way to tailor your online art search is to understand how much your client is willing to spend. Talking numbers in the beginning can be challenging, but upfront budget conversations have a huge payoff. They allow art consultants to tailor their initial art search and ensure that you won't see options out of your price range. Consultants understand that budgets can sometimes change throughout project fulfillment, and can always update your art package accordingly.


2. Communicate (with pictures and words)

Debrief with visuals
Don't be afraid to share your imagery - mood boards, renderings, elevations, or other visual cues help communicate your aesthetic and brand identity. Giving your consultant a good sense of the space is tantamount to finding targeted art.


Provide feedback
There is a lot of art out there, and consultants have a large database of options to work through. When you communicate your likes and dislikes, consultants can tailor their art search in subsequent rounds. If consultants understand your color, style, or medium preferences, they can more quickly find you exactly what you are looking for.


*keep in mind: feedback on what's not working is just as helpful as feedback on what you love.


3. Take Risks

Deviate from your inspiration
With so much art to discover you want to keep an open mind. Searching for a singular inspiration image can quickly become arduous. Think about the style, medium, or color of the inspiration image then solidify one of two key attributes you want to retain and a few you are willing to deviate from. This takes pressure off your art search and organically encourages visual creativity.


4. Minimize logistical friction

Aggregate Favorites
It's inevitable that you will find work from multiple avenues. Keep your search organized by pulling your favorites into one place - a Pinterest board, computer file, or presentation. This repository allows you to take a visual break without feat of losing your faves. When you revisit with a new set of eyes, you're bound to have stronger inclinations.


Work with a turn-key company
Art packages can be confusing, and little kinks can delay a project in various stages of licensing, production, and install. Find a company that handles the logistics from A-Z, so that you can focus more on the art selection and final space.

PRO (hospitality) TIP

Share your consultant's specs/quote directly with your purchasing agent

This cuts down on the time that goes into checking and rechecking purchase orders. Everyone needs to be on the same page: if PA's have the direct quote, discrepancies are easier to clear up and production can begin faster.


Have a Project in Mind?
Indiewalls helps interior designers, brands, and real estate developers discover, purchase, and commission art from independent artists.