How Art Advising Works

What is the role of an art advisor?

Whether you are new to the world of collecting or a life-long patron, art advisors assist collectors in sourcing works of art that represent sound cultural and financial investments. 

Thoughtful art investing can be more involved than purchasing at a gallery or art fair. Just as investing in the stock market usually requires professional advice, this is also true when investing in fine art. Unlike the regulation of financial markets, there is no industry watchdog like the SEC, or even a universally accepted set of best practices for sellers and representatives to abide by, making new collectors particularly susceptible to financial risk. This is where art advisors can play a role in guiding sound investments. 

Art advisors are a solution to art world complexity, helping collectors navigate the tumultuous art market. Typically independent from galleries, auction houses and artists, advisors represent the interests of the collector.  In addition to subject manager analysis, art that is sourced by an art advisor has undergone a thorough vetting process that involves quality inspection and price comparisons.


What services does an art advisor provide?

  • Art Market Expertise and Insider Connections

The art market is a relationship-based industry –  it’s easier to navigate when you have someone on the inside. An art advisor does the lengthy legwork that is required in process of collecting. This involves research, market analysis, and using their insider connections to introduce collectors to reputable galleries and artists. Art advisors negotiate the sale on behalf of their clients, and handle the professional due diligence of condition reports and price justification requests that comes with brokering art sales. 

The best art advisors build relationships across the art world, allowing them to keep tabs on works held in private collections in addition to following public art market trends and auction results. Much like a financial advisor who helps clients invest wisely, art advisors play an integral role in helping collectors decide what to purchase, and why.

  • Sourcing quality, thoroughly-vetted art works for their clients.

There is always art on the market, but finding works of interest with sound investment potential is where the skill and experience of an art advisor comes in, even when a collector knows exactly what they want. An important aspect of sourcing begins with listening to the client to ascertain what genres, mediums and periods are the most compelling to the collector. Art advisors don’t just help patrons source work for their collections, they also assist in curating and strategizing when, why, and how to invest in art.

An art advisor is responsible for knowing where available works are and then how to make them accessible to clients. They search beyond auction houses and galleries to offer the client access to private collections and works direct from the artist’s studio.

  • Collection Strategy for Art as Alternative Investment

The top art advisor pairs art market experience with an extensive background in art history to help their clients more deeply understand the significance and meaning  of the art that fascinates them most. Collecting art is a participatory experience, and advisors help clients decide what to focus on given their interests, their resources, and how involved they want to be in the collecting process. The most effective art advisors want to learn about  client interests, steadily guiding collectors to develop a curatorial vision for their collection, even if it consists of just one piece (so far, that is). 

Art advisors offer critical insight throughout the art collecting experience, often lending curatorial acumen in pruning or restructuring a collection in order to respond to a collector’s changing tastes or shifts in the art market – or both. Finally, the strength and growth of any collection depend on its physical and administrative care. Framing, conservation, storage, insurance, installation and cataloguing are all crucial on-going services that are managed by independent art advisors. 


ArtRow brings the art advisory experience to the digital marketplace so you can feel confident about your investment.

Regardless of who and where you are, ArtRow puts the closed-door experience of art advising into your hands. Our articles, guides, and digital library are here to help you develop a keener sense for collecting that is based in art history, not art market fads and trends. 

Every work of art listed for sale on ArtRow has been thoughtfully sourced and thoroughly vetted. This means we ensure that the artist has a market track-record and that the provenance and condition of the work has been researched. Learn more about us here.


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