Who and what determines the value of art?

An artist depicts more than what is seen. Art encapsulates the visual instance and the emotional weight of the moment. Capturing the emotions is tantamount to capturing time. Art speaks to what is present and what is pointedly missing. For example, a portrait doesn’t just show the viewer what the person looked like, but where they are in their lives and how they feel about it. Is the subject happy or sad? Are they longing for something or someone? The answers to these vital questions can only be revealed in the silent dialog between the art and the viewer.


The value of art can vary based on many factors. Although a name that is well known can seriously increase the value of art, condition, workmanship and prevalence are factors that are just as important. Unless you’re highly knowledgeable and you have had many years of experience handling arts, art can be extremely hard to verify and you need to take the services of an experienced art appraiser to determine the value and authenticity of a certain piece of artwork.


An art appraiser not only determines the value of a piece of artwork, but the appraiser also proves authenticity. Art appraisers are neutral professionals who values art for a living, and who work on your behalf. Typically, an appraiser is certified by a regulatory agency.


Art appraisals are also important if you if you have items of value to donate, insure or sell. An art appraisal is a professional opinion that documents the quality and value of a work of art. The appraisal can be written for a variety of purposes, such as for tax purposes or to determine the replacement cost. The Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) provides standards for writing appraisals.


As the value of art change over time, so it is important to maintain the proper level of insurance coverage for a collection. For purposes of estate planning, a current inventory of your art collections can be invaluable. Often people do not realize what they have and what and how they wish to distribute it until they have an itemized list in front of them. As well, there are often taxation issues which you may want to consider.


Find the right appraiser for your artwork. Make sure that he is familiar with your style and era of the piece of art that you like. It’s usually best to do the appraisal in person if the art has potential market value. Check for members of a professional organization such as ISA, ASA. These members stick to strict professional ethics, and their appraisals are recognized throughout the world.


Finally, never use an online appraisal service. Since the appraiser is not looking at your art piece in person, the value is highly inaccurate. Second, never let an appraiser offer to buy your antique because he may give you a price that is marked way lower than book value for him to get a deal. Also, be aware that some appraisers charge a few hundred dollars per hour. So do your research before investing in an appraiser that could be less than professional.





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