A Guide to the Secondary Art Market

Beginning your art-collecting journey can be overwhelming, so knowing all about the secondary market is a great way to get started. Art has the power to alter your mood, brighten your home and make you smile.

Once you begin investing in art, you will come to realise that it is more than just an investment for the future. The secondary market is a good place to get started if you are just beginning your art collection, it can be less risky and a good way to build on your collection.

Once you gain more knowledge about the art world, you may feel brave enough to jump into the primary art market and take a risk on some potential up-and-coming artists. Read this article today if you wish to learn more about our guide to the secondary art market.


What Is the Secondary Art Market?

The secondary art market refers to the resale of artworks – this includes private selling or an auction market, for example. The primary art market refers to the first-time purchase of artwork.

It is only when the first owner of the art decides to sell and the art is being sold for the second time does the art become a secondary piece and is being sold for the second time.

The secondary art market often includes artworks by artists who have some kind of reputation in the art industry. The secondary market dealers, therefore, have little contact with the artists themselves and don’t intend on selling the work at a lower price; it is usually used to gain a profit through reselling.

The secondary art market can be beset with a wide range of unique challenges whilst, at the same time, provide untold opportunities for art collectors and fine art investors.


Where to Find Secondary Art

Most of the art found at auction houses is likely to be secondary art. You can also find secondary art at art galleries, art fairs and from art dealers directly too. These are the main places to find secondary art if you are looking to purchase or wish to sell art on the secondary market.

The purchase of art on the secondary market will involve the artwork, the history of the artwork and the financial history of the artwork too.


Why Purchase Secondary Art?

The reasons to purchase secondary art will depend highly on your collection and your motivation for collecting and purchasing artwork, such as a financial investment opportunity, to look great in your home, or to potentially support an artist.

If you intend to purchase art from the secondary market in order to make a profit then your purchase should reflect the likelihood of the artwork increasing in price.

The secondary art market is known for being the less risky way of purchasing art as, although the primary market tends to be cheaper and more dedicated to finding the ‘next big thing’ as well as the new ‘up-and-coming’ artists, there is no guarantee that an artist’s career will take off.

Therefore, the artwork you purchase on the primary market may decrease in value as there is no way of knowing what the artwork will be worth long term.

When you buy from the secondary market, you may know of the artist and be more inclined to purchase for your own collection, despite paying a higher price compared to the primary market.


Secondary Art Market Pros and Cons

The secondary art market has its share of pros and cons, some of which can be found below.


Pros of the Secondary Art Market

Artwork that you buy and sell on the secondary art market already has more information and historical, tangible facts and figures about the work. This can include owner history and what was previously paid for it which can help you justify your investment into a piece of secondary market art.

Knowing that a piece of art has increased in value compared to when it was a primary sale can help you estimate that it could potentially continue to increase in value in the future and therefore after you have purchased it.

Although you will be the one paying more than what the art was first purchased for as a primary art piece, buying it now and seeing its value increase even further could make a worthwhile investment.

Overall, you can make more calculated decisions by investing in the secondary art market, which is why a lot of people choose to do it.


Cons of the Secondary Art Market

Do bear in mind that even the secondary market has its risks and there is no way of knowing just how much the artwork you buy on the second-hand market will be worth.

Secondary art pieces can increase in value over time although, on the other hand, they can indeed decrease in value too, potentially resulting in a loss of profit.

Investing in anything holds some level of risk, and this is still the case with secondary art as it is still potentially risky. Getting yourself an art advisor can help you make calculated and informed decisions with your investments.


Secondary Art at Grove Gallery

Before you decide on whether the secondary art market is the right market for your investment goals, it is important to research the primary vs secondary market for your awareness and depending on what you are looking to achieve with your investments.

At Grove Gallery, we offer independent and impartial art advisory services which can work for building on private collections.

Having an art advisor is helpful to provide invaluable knowledge which will help you navigate your art investments and whatever you are trying to achieve with your art purchasing and collection, and tell you what you need to know about investing in art.

Contact us at Grove Gallery today – we are art experts in art and have all the right contact to help you source secondary art pieces for clients to suit your tastes.

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