Inhibitions to Buying Art Online

Lea Kämpf

Everyone knows it: Who hasn't shopped for clothes or shoes, electronic devices or household items online? Just one click and the products land in your shopping basket. How many of you readers, on the other hand, have perhaps bought art at exhibitions, in galleries, at openings, at art fairs, maybe even at flea markets, in decoration shops, etc.? But online? Not a chance.

A recent survey on our art24 Instagram account confirmed exactly this assumption. 

Sure, consumer products are often cheaper than an acrylic painting by a talented artist. But don't we also let these things gather dust somewhere very quickly and replace them with new trends after a short time? 

With art, it's a little different: you want to find something unique that can't be replaced so quickly and will adorn your own four walls for a long time.

But what are we afraid of when we want to buy art online? Why do we buy clothes, technology, cosmetics, household goods and so on, which we usually already have in abundance at home, through our trusted online supplier, but hesitate when it comes to buying unique works of art? Are we afraid that our taste will change over time? That the picture won't look exactly the same in the original as it does online, beautifully photographed and exposed?

And why should I buy art on art24 when I can view the works in "real and in colour" at fairs, exhibitions etc. and buy them on the spot? And why on art24 when there are other online art platforms? 

We want to get to the bottom of these questions in the following article.


Reluctance of Private Buyers


The value of a work of art is not comparable to that of a consumer good. Not only is the financial value higher in the majority of cases, but also the aesthetic value is more important when buying art. So, the higher the intrinsic value, the higher and faster the inhibition threshold rises when buying. To what extent does this affect our decision to buy consumer products but not to buy art online?

The reason is quite obvious: we have been buying everyday consumer goods online for much longer. We know our shoe size, our clothes size. We know more or less which colours suit us and which shape of clothing looks good on us. And what can go wrong with the online book purchase, the cat food we ordered, the electronic mixer or the furniture table, etc.? Maybe we experienced a little disappointment now and then. Sometimes the colour or the cut of the clothes wasn't right: didn't the colour of the red jumper look much brighter and fresher online? Did the shirt on the model not look more form-fitting? Although most of us are probably aware that the pieces are often edited with Photoshop or hidden clips adjust the garment to the model's body, it's very easy for us to put the product into our shopping cart and click on order. And despite everything, we don't let ourselves be put off by such "little" setbacks and end up on yet another shopping page through the next Instagram ad.

Buying art online is therefore not part of our habit. It's a new thing to buy art online and certainly only very few people do it.

Viewing the artwork on a digital screen seems to create a barrier. We are used to admiring art in situ and up close in museums, exhibitions or parks. You can get a closer look of the artwork, admire the technical details, the surface texture, the application of the colours live on the work. Maybe you can even talk about the art with the artist on the spot.

It seems much more difficult to establish a personal connection to the artist and the artwork online.

If one is lucky, detailed photographs are added to the work, allowing a closer look and providing more information on the appearance of the surface, the paint application, condition, etc. There may also be photo montages where the work is shown in an often clean and staged living space to show how big the work really is and how it might look hanging in the room. 

In addition to the personal connection, other factors, such as the transport of the artwork or return shipping, stand in the way of buying online.

If one decides to buy art, the decision is made. It can't be returned to the shop as easily as any pair of jeans that didn't fit. If you don't like it, you can't just return it ... 

The decision to buy a work of art seems final. That's where the fear, inhibition and uncertainty come from when buying art online. 

However, buying online has also a number of advantages. The purchase can be made from the comfort of your own home. The online sales page can be “entered” 24 hours a day. The purchase of a work of art can therefore be carefully considered over a period of time. Especially for those interested in buying who do not have time to visit exhibitions or who have a certain inhibition to contact artists, buying art online is the most efficient solution. 

who do not have exhibitions near you, but who offer their art from all over the world. You can discover new art much more quickly and it is more diverse because of the extensive selection.


Why art24 as an Online Art Platform?

At art24, we pay attention to quality, variety and professional accuracy. Behind the platform stands an art team consisting of art historians and art restorers who work closely with IT and marketing. We are a team that comes together from different areas of specialisation and thus manages to cover all gaps. We complement each other, advise each other and learn from each other. Every day, the team works with heart and energy for art24 to constantly drive the platform forward. 

What makes us special is our direct individual and personal support and advice. We show empathy and solidarity by specifically promoting and supporting individual artists. We want to create an artists' network and thus our own community that supports and motivates each other.

Each work represents an original. We make sure that the works come from genuine and authentic artists. We also make sure that collectors' works are authentic. Dubious artist profiles or suspicions of forgery are not accepted on the platform.

This way, it is easier than ever for the buyer to find works and to get in touch with the seller.

As a buyer, you no longer need to have a guilty conscience, because by buying you are supporting the artists directly instead of the galleries. Because here on art24, the artist or the private seller stands directly behind the work for sale, which means that no commission costs are passed on to third parties.

Contact is made directly and personally. If questions arise about the work, the seller can be contacted directly with one click. 

This way, a direct contact exchange takes place via chat, which can be revisited at any given day and time, without feeling the compulsion or pressure to buy the work of art directly, as is usually the case in situ at the vernissage or at fairs.

The only thing that is necessary is a registration, which of course also serves as a certain level of protection or security for the artist or the seller. The buyer can expect an authentic seller. And it's exactly the same the other way round. The registration as well as visiting the art24 platform is completely free of charge for visitors or prospective buyers. So, what is there to lose? Nothing, really.

Here you will find works that you would probably never have discovered. Remarkably qualitative, perhaps also sometimes rather unknown or forgotten artists who never made it into the museums during their lifetime or who are falling into oblivion in the museums' depots. But also works by important old masters, collectors' and archival works are presented on art24. From new, emerging artists to deceased, historically recognised artists, everything is there.

Now you no longer have to go to a specific vernissage, exhibition or fair, but have everything at a glance. Filter functions, such as art technique, dimensions, art style, price range and more, allow you to find the desired work: whether photography, drawing, graphics, sculpture, painting, etc., from traditional Chinese art to the Middle Ages to space art: art24 is diverse.

And art24 never stands still. We are constantly working on new functions, improvements to the platform, new ideas to drive us onwards. From smaller features like more filter functions, search subscriptions, watch lists, to bigger functions like event calendars, service registers, worldwide expansion, etc. 

How art24 continues to identify itself and how art24 differs from art fairs like Art Basel can be read in the blog art24 vs. Art Basel.