Whilst art is an emotional investment, we have a solid track record at New Blood Art for identifying emerging artists who go on to establish careers and become collectable, with examples of increases from 3 – 5 figures in just a few years. So I am often asked: Which artists would you invest in now? To find new – and potentially great – artists, a good place to start is at the art schools. Whilst an artist may have innate talent, really good art comes from those who have also been rigorously trained, who are disciplined, passionate and committed to their practice.
It is tricky to define the characteristics I look for, as instinct plays such an essential role.. However, in an attempt to qualify the process it is likely that outstanding emerging artists share the following characteristics:
The following extract originally published in MoneyWeek Magazine.
An identifiable style: Artists with an identifiable style have found a way of handling paint, approaching their subject, or working with themes that are specific to them. But I also like to see evolution over time – it makes sense for an artist to experiment in different areas while keeping a stylistic thread running through their work. Art tutors push this kind of development at college. We need to see that the artist can keep it going.
A sophisticated technique: You need to see depth in the work. It’s fine – good even – for the artist to reference other artists, but very much as re-invention within their own unique identifiable style. New and different is amazing – if rare.
Quality of materials: They use quality stretchers, canvas and paints. Using expensive, high-quality materials demonstrates a certain commitment and integrity. Often the best emerging artists make their own stretchers and carefully select the linen or canvas, and their work starts there. Some paints also have much better archival properties than others, and really good quality paints have high pigment content – works made with these will still be vibrant in decades to come. Serious art collections don’t come with cheap canvas.
Commitment: Committed and passionate artist’s who are likely therefore to be making work in ten years time. Artists who are applying for prizes, arts funding, residencies and competitions. It’s vital that they are committed to raising their profile – all of this indicates an artist is likely to continue to drive their practice forward.
Professionalism: Some artists get so emotionally attached to work that they can’t easily let it go. This keeps them small. Long-term artists make and sell.
The enthusiasm of experts: College tutors have an inside line to the artists on their courses. I always relish the chance to tour a studio or art show with a college tutor and listen to their opinion on artists.