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Starving Artist Works Can Be Misleading

- - Sanny Tendilla

By Glenn Matthews

All of us have heard the appeal to come buy original artwork at a starving artist show at a motel or coliseum nearby. These ads claim to allow you to purchase artwork for a small fraction of the price you would pray otherwise.

But there are two types of "starving artists" and if you're considering such deals, be sure that you aren't keeping artists starving.

Some of these art works are genuine original pieces. In these instances, the artwork will be marketed through a gallery or frame shop and also the name of the artist is going to be available, if not well known. Sometimes galleries hold starving artist shows, when they may feature several pieces by the same artist, or several different artists. There were be a variety of subject matter, but consistency of style and brush strokes will match the paint. Sometimes these galleries will advertise that they are "not affiliated with Starving Artist Hotel Group."

There are other common shows that may not be unique or created by artists. They will say that while not a duplicate, they resemble the original. They may all be set in the same European environment, or have the same selection of colors.

There is usually evidence of these types of sales. They may not even be paintings, but a print with brush strokes. Those which are painted might be produced in what's the same in principle as an assembly line exactly where workers do only 1 small part of every painting, recreating the same piece more than and more than for batches of paintings destined for various sales. There are assembly lines overseas where the work can be done cheaply.

In these cases, only the starving part of the name may be true. These people are not artists, but workers in a sweatshop.

It's understandable to want to save money, but don't fall for false advertising. Reap the benefits of sales at local galleries or buy prints, that may provide the exact same end result.

If you do decide to attend a starving artist sale, then do so with an understanding of what you're buying. Make sure you evaluate your choices.

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