"Oh interesting...which Ikea did you buy your skyline print from?"~ Said no one ever.
I always thought mass-produced prints or as I like to call them faux-artwork to be a strange phenomenon. They are really a piece of home decor that is a place holder for real artwork and we are all complicit in pretending they are. There is only one thing worse than blank walls folks, and that is walls covered with something a huge machine made literally hundreds of thousands of copies of for the same huge corporation and which people have hung in the exact same place. Don't be those people. Be original. Read on...
1. Buying Original Art is Sexy
I don't care if you live in a mansion or a basement apartment- having original art on your walls puts you in a whole new category. It shows you have taste, you are an original thinker, you have a certain level of culture and you are conscious of how you spend your money- not to mention that you are basically guaranteed artist friends. That series of original prints you invested in speaks volumes!
2. Living with Original Art Makes you Smarter
A recent study by the University of Houston, which set out to measure the effect of art on the brain found that " when viewing art, there is a major increase in a brain's delta wave connectivity, which is linked to a person's decision making and sustained attention. There is an even higher increase in the brain's gamma wave activity, which is linked to information processing and cognition." So being in the presence of original artwork that you find meaningful will actually boost your brain's activity up to 10%.
3. Buying Original Art Can be Very Affordable
Most people are intimidated by the prospect of buying original art. There are certain assumptions out there in the ether that make everyone flock to the messy canvas print wall at HomeSense because the idea of looking for something original scares them. The biggest assumption of course is that original = expensive. Let me shed some light on this one- false. Original art, especially if you are buying from an emerging artist doesn't have to cost you an arm and a leg. Your local university art departments are full of insanely talented artists that will sell you some gorgeous pieces for a dent in their rent money (been there).
4. Owning Original Art is an Investment
Trust me on this one- that generic print you bought is never going to increase in value- ever. In fact the best you will be able to do is sell it on Kijiji for a tiny fraction of what you paid for it. That painting you bought (and love) from that brilliant young painter, however, can be worth something one day. A Jackson Pollock was selling for $1500 in the 1950s and Van Gogh didn't sell any of his work while he was alive. You just never know!
5. Supporting Local Artists is the New Black
Don't misunderstand this last heading as a form of charity. I don't believe that buying art should be a charitable act. You should only buy a piece that you love for what you and the artist decide is a fair price. That being said, artists are some of the most economically undervalued members of our social fabric. Without them we would be living a drab existence indeed. Supporting them shows that you are in tune with that fact and are willing to do something to change it.