Tagged: online art galleries

Buy Fine Art From Amazon…Soon


Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon is discussing plans with about 100 art galleries in the US of selling fine art online. The e-tail giant plans to create another part in its site where it will offer unique paintings, prints, and other fine art pieces. Amazon has already organized cocktail receptions in Seattle, and other big art cities including New York and San Francisco, inviting galleries to join the plan.

According to WSJ, Amazon will charge the art galleries a monthly membership fee of $100 and will get a commission of 5-20%, depending on the sold artwork. Higher-prices pieces would be subject to lower commission rates. The membership fee would be waived for art houses which would partner with Amazon in selling high-end art until 2015. Amazon will be using a retail model, which means each artwork has a fixed price, unlike art auction houses where the highest bidder gets the art.

Online selling of fine art is a double-edged sword. Amazon’s plan is a great way for art galleries to reach more people. Art lovers outside the city such as New York would be able to buy great art without traveling to the city. At the comfort of their homes or offices, people can easily buy art, even without visiting the actual art gallery. However, a drawback of this plan is that people may be hesitant to buying expensive paintings without seeing the actual painting. Most likely, art buyers won’t pay six- or even seven-figures for something that they only see online. Unlike buying a book or a gadget online, serious art collectors would naturally want to see the artworks personally.

High-end online auctioneers such as Sotheby’s and Christie’s said there is a growing market for expensive art over the Internet. Sotheby’s BidNow program was able to sell a 16th century portrait of Giovanni Gaddi for $2 million in 2012. Christie’s have been accepting online bids since 2007. It revealed that 27% of its auction sales ($6.2 billion) last year came from online bidding and regular auctions. Christie’s was able to sell Edward Hopper’s oil on canvas painting entitled “October on the Cape” to an online bidder for $9.6 million.

As of now we’re not sure if Amazon’s plan to sell high-end art will come to fruition. In 1999, Amazon forged a partnership with Sotheby’s to sell fine art but it lasted for 16 months only because the jointly operated auction site, Sothebys.Amazon.com, failed to gain traction. Also, there are many online art galleries offering a wide range of art from numerous artists that already have established markets and loyal clientele.

Image source: www.gizmodo.com

5 Ways Artists Can Protect Themselves From Online Scams

art.computer.securityThe information age makes its easier for artists to introduce, promote, and sell their paintings using the Internet. Artists can use the services of numerous online art galleries and social media networks to establish their art business. They can also set up their own art website or art blog as platforms for their online business. The Internet makes it easier for artists to do business but unfortunately, there are scammers who also take advantage of technology. As an artist, you must protect yourself and prevent becoming a victim of art scams.

Ways to protect yourself against fraud:

1. Be skeptical. If you receive an email or an offer that’s too good to be true, it probably is. Artists are vulnerable to these scams because they are hungry for fame, excited to make that first sale, and eager to make connections in the business. Signs to look for in a scam email: wrong grammar and spelling of words, urgency to buy, and the so-called buyer insists on arranging the shipment of the painting. Check out the Internet for the lists of email scams, including popular scammer names and email addresses.

2. Establish strict rules on accepting check payments and money orders. To protect yourself, never accept postdated checks, third-party checks, and checks where the amount is more than the agreed upon price for the artwork. Don’t accept overpayment wherein you have to refund the excess amount. For money orders, request the buyer to send payment from a trusted, domestic bank.

2. Make sure the payment is correct and has been cleared. Do not ship the painting unless the check or money order has been cleared in your bank. It takes three weeks or longer before a bank clears checks and if the check you’ve deposited turned to be a counterfeit, your bank may charge penalty fees on you.

3. Protect all online transactions. Use a trustworthy online payment service such as PayPal which protects both you and the buyer. If you’re buying art online, see if the web address starts with “https” or has a padlock symbol. These signs mean that the website where you are placing payment is secure and financial information such as your credit card number is encrypted when it is sent.

4. Be vigilant against computer viruses, trojans, malware,etc. Use the latest anti-virus and anti-spyware programs and keep them updated. If a virus attacks your computer, it can lead losing all your files, including the commercial photos of your paintings. Activate the firewall to prevent online criminals from accessing your computer and getting vital information on your art business.

5. Report scams. If you’ve been a victim of fraud, report it to your State Attorney General’s Office of Consumer Affairs. You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.

Image source: www.cnn.com

Best Online Art Markets to Sell Paintings

Moonlite and Hare

With the digital age, canvas artists are now harnessing the power of technology to start their art business. Finished paintings are professionally photographed and uploaded to an online art gallery to hopefully interest potential buyers and generate sales. With hundreds of online art galleries and auctions out there, here’s a list of the best of them to help you start.

Artmajeur. Artmajeur is one of the largest finest art gallery in the world, featuring the best contemporary artists. Established in 2000, it displays over 2 million original pieces and has sold over 150,000 art works. You can sign up for free and start networking with other artists. Artists in Artmajeur are ranked by popularity using visitors’ and page views. (www.artmajeur.com)

Artnet. Artnet offers a wide range of information and transaction services for artists. It has an extensive collection in its database of Fine Art, Design, and Decorative Art which provides information on the market and pricing trends. The site features 1,700 galleries around the world and displays 170,000 art works. (www.artnet.com)

Artsy. Artsy features artworks from famous galleries, museums, foundations, and private collections worldwide. It displays the largest collections of contemporary pieces and it aims to make world art accessible to the people. (www.artsy.net)

Artspace. Artspace is an online platform for fine art and design, featuring an extensive selection of curated artworks from leading museums and artists around the world. It aims to help people discover and collect fine pieces of art. (www.artspace.com)

Artwanted. Artwanted is a large network of artists and online galleries. It serves as a community and a place for selling artworks. The site promotes members and gives informative feedback on their work, helping artists to hone their craft. (www.artwanted.com)

Fine Art America. Fine Art America is the leading marketplace for buying and selling artwork around the world. It provides various sales and marketing tools to help artists build their brands. (www.fineartamerica.com)

Deviantart. Deviantart is the world’s largest online community for artists in various genre. The site primarily caters to contemporary artists from fan art, digital art to animation but it also offers its services to painters. It has over 25 million members and artists can submit their works and connect with other members. (www.deviantart.com)

Etsy. Etsy is an e-commerce website launched in 2005 where artists can sell their works. It is a bustling marketplace where you can buy and sell handmade and vintage items, including paintings in different medium and even art supplies. (www.etsy.com)

Imagekind. Imagekind displays millions on canvas art, framed wall art, and photos. It is a platform where artists can share and create their works and buyers can purchase museum-quality framed art. (www.imagekind.com)

Paddle8. Paddle8 is an online auction site, giving artists and buyers a platform for transacting business. It offers low-cost themed auctions, getting 6% commission from artists and 12% from buyers. It also offers benefit auctions for non-profit institutions. (www.paddle8.com)

Zhibit. Zhibit offers user-friendly tools which help artists create their own websites, build their art business, and connect with other members in the community. It offers the lowest rates, for as low as $49/year, in its subscription plans. (www.zhibit.org)

Image source: www.fineartamerica.com