Art buyers and collectors have many ways to acquire contemporary works of art, especially by living artists. In addition to buying at galleries and auctions there is the internet and art fairs.
The array of art that is available is truly fantastic. There are numerous websites for any single genre, style, or medium. In recent years artists, art galleries, auctions and art fairs all have their own websites.
There are times when collectors or interior designers need art for a specific space or effect, or for a unique taste. Commissioning a work of art specifically addresses these concerns. Commissions are not welcomed by every artist. Some submissions are a dubious undertaking even for artists do commissions.
I recently decided to decorate a corporate office in which I am a partner after seeing the abstract paintings owned by our neighboring law firm. Because we shared some common structural issues with the modern architecture of our building I decided the best solution was to commission the art.
I listed with several like-minded associates and we decided to commission two large paintings instead of a single huge painting. We also rule out the possibility of a divided divided diptych. The two large paintings would have some common color and movements that would denote energy, authority and elegance.
After making some calls and surfing the web, I narrowed the artists to three. I would contact each about their portfolios, commissioning prices and various details. To make a long story short I negotiated the commission with a well known Abstract Expressionist, Brad Bannister.
We had to agree on several issues regarding dimensions, size, frame-or-not-to-frame, completion dates, pricing and incremental payment, shipping and insurance. We decided the dimensions of each paintings would be 32 "high and 44" wide. The paintings would be oil and mixed-media on canvas. The canvases would have been shipped to my office, rolled into a tube. The stretching would be done in Los Angeles at a friend's gallery with a 2-inch wide bar for gallery wrap presentation.
The artworks were agreed to contain several colors, with two predominating. The agreed upon price is not for disclosure, but the work began when one half of the commission was paid by corporate check. There were no stipulations as to composition but a loosely agreed upon idea that they would convey "energy, authority, and elegance."
The two commissioned abstract paintings arrived about one week ago and were stretched here, as specified. They are absolutely beautiful in my opinion, and the opinions of my associates – who are all happy this worked out well.
The artworks will be hung and shown at our officewarming party. The media will be there and these paintings will be directly behind and on either side of our podium for the event. After our opening and photographing the paintings I will publish the images. Did these paintings fulfill the particular needs of our offices, business and building? Really very well. I can only recommend the commissioning process and product.