June 29, 2010
I have changed the format of these pages from one of commentary to be a place for the online display of art collections. It begins with the Edwards/Pedersen collection indicated on the upper right of this page. I would hope that all artists and gallery owners would encourage those who buy works of art to keep some details of the collections in an online space such as this.
It is supplemental to the existing books on the subject of Art. Every beginning Art History course has a textbook filled with works that are a part of various museum collections as well as many pieces in private hands. The question comes to me as to why that should represent Art. It does, to some extent, catalog the works of the past. Many of them are important, perhaps even all of them … to someone. But, for the art collector today, what is in a museum somewhere is not as important as what is being collected today, created by the artists of today.
The presentation of works ought, at the very least, to include some notation as to the size of the work as well as a reference to the medium used. The collector may choose to undertake this task. It is also possible to employ someone with an education in Art as well as web design. The main thing is to not allow the collection to disappear forever once it leaves the art gallery.
There are other considerations. For purposes of insurance, images of a collection can be a valuable set of supporting data. In case of fire, they can show what you had in your collection. In case of theft, a set of images can make it easier to trace stolen artwork. If someone breaks into your house and steals a painting by Gary Pruner, or Jack Ogden, then takes it to a dealer and says that his uncle Harvey left it to him in his will and that he just wants to sell it, the dealer can look up the artist’s name in Google Images and find that the painting belongs to you. That only works if it is shown online and identified as belonging to you.
Often those given the task of appraising a work of art have little to go on in that the artist of the recent past is no longer represented by any gallery. The online cataloging on the part of “all” collectors would be of use in this regard.
Update June 13, 2014
It has been almost four years since I began this site. Talking to gallery owners and collectors about putting art online has lead to nothing. There is a problem that comes from putting collections onto a single page. Originally, I put our entire collection (well, most of it) on a single page. We have about ten paintings by Victor Heady and fifteen to twenty by Raymond Rowley King. When I do an advanced image search on Google for “Raymond Rowley King”, images of his work show up mingled with images of Victor’s work. Eventually, works by all the other artists in our collection show up from the same search. It is, I believe, because they are on the same page where King’s work is. To cut back on this phenomenon, I moved King’s work to a separate page.