A missed opportunity: my 2009 Glover Prize entry

I love looking at ‘huge’ paintings, ones that are metres in length and breadth. They certainly grab your attention. Their size often dominates the space they’re hung in and one can feel quite small in comparison. To go with their size, these paintings have a tag displayed alongside that more often than not states a very large price. Why is this so? For far too long we’ve equated size with price in the majority of art that is for sale. It’s about time we took a good look at this practice.

I have seen ‘rubbish’ work on a large scale asking a huge price. This is more to do with snob value than value for money.

Artwork should be priced on its cleverness and success rather than its size. Do we ever assess ‘effort’ when we look at artwork? You bet we do! How many hours you put into your painting is irrelevant. Whether it works or not is what really counts.

There comes a time (or two) when art artist really ‘nails it’. It’s then time to offer that work well above the normal asking price. Special work is to be valued, even treasured and the artist needs to be rewarded for their success. The artist also needs to recognise his or her success and charge an appropriate price.

As a judge I have seen beautiful, clever work with a relatively low price tag that are readily snapped up by eager buyers who know a bargain when they see it!

Before you price your work, ask yourself is the painting in question just bas good as the rest of my work, or is it better?

Two years ago I was a finalist in the Glover Prize, one of Australia’s most prestigious art awards. I valued my entry at the same price that I was selling (of that size) at the time. It sold very early on the opening night for $920. It was up until that time, the best drawing I had ever done and I should have priced it a lot higher. Last year I produced an even better artwork that carried an $1,800 price tag, that resulted in a return (prize) of $10,000!

Swings and roundabouts!

Don’t be afraid to increase the price of your work if it deserves it. It’s not the size of the artwork that matters it’s how successful it is!


About artkleko

artist, art curator, art teacher, art judge, art critic
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