C OMMI S SI O N I N G ART

HOW TO GET THE ART PIECE YOU RE­ALLY WANT

Home & Decor (Malaysia) - - Now -

A com­mis­sioned work of art in­volves some­one – a com­mis­sioner – ask­ing an artist to cre­ate some­thing unique for him or her. With the sheer di­ver­sity of the con­tem­po­rary art world, the sky’s the limit.

How and where do you com­mis­sion art?

The process is gen­er­ally more in­volved than walk­ing into a gallery and pur­chas­ing some­thing you like. Ac­cord­ing to Melvin Yuan, CEO of The Com­mis­sioned – a web­site which fa­cil­i­tates art com­mis­sions – it’s ideal for the com­mis­sioner to com­mu­ni­cate openly with the artist and es­tab­lish a rap­port.

If you don’t al­ready have an artist in mind, it may be a good idea to visit fairs, or get to know gal­lerists, who can con­nect you to artists who can de­liver the style you want. Newer plat­forms, such as The Com­mis­sioned, al­low you to browse artists’ port­fo­lios.

How much does com­mis­sioned art cost?

Fac­tors that in­flu­ence the price in­clude the artist’s ex­pe­ri­ence, their past sale prices, their promi­nence in the art world, the medium of the com­mis­sion, the com­plex­ity of the project, and so on.

If you meet an artist at a grad­u­a­tion show and com­mis­sion a sim­ple sketch, it could be some­thing in the low three fig­ures, or less. On the other end of the spec­trum, for work by reg­u­lars of in­ter­na­tional fairs and bi­en­nales – well, there’s no real up­per limit there. Ex­treme out­liers aside, you’re likely to see prices in the four-fig­ure range.

How long do I have to wait for an art­work?

That de­pends on some fac­tors. Per­haps the most crit­i­cal would be the scale and com­plex­ity of the work in ques­tion.

A small por­trait might take no more than a few weeks, while ex­per­i­men­tal work might take longer to con­cep­tu­alise and ex­e­cute.

What if I don’t like it?

Of the artists we spoke to, none had sto­ries of failed ex­pec­ta­tions to re­late. Hon­esty in com­mu­ni­cat­ing re­duces the pos­si­bil­ity of what could be a rather costly ex­pe­ri­ence.

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