The British art collector Charles Saatchi has made news after he bought a whole exhibition by the Royal Academy art student James Howard.
The art of success: Saatchi buys student’s entire show
“Such is Mr Saatchi’s standing as a collector that he can make or break an artist, raising profiles and prices. Having made the names of Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin and other young British artists whose works now command six and seven figures, his activities are viewed as a barometer of the market.” Times Online
I don’t like the fact that big art collectors can influence what people buy or even what artists create, but I’m happy for artists that catch the eye of big collectors. The thing that bothers me is that artists can start to create work to suit the tastes of a major collector, but that’s a criticism of the artist rather than the collector.
How much influence do collectors of art really have over the work we produce? I think if we answered that question honestly, it would be.. “Lots!”. Unless you have an income that is independent of your art making, you think about the people that buy your art. Which isn’t necessarily a really bad thing.. or is it?