I am delighted to be hanging on the walls of the beautiful Crossnore Gallery...
Art as a Gift?
Giving art can be a bit tricky. But with some thought and planning it can be of the most appreciated and memorable gifts ever. Since I love to give(and receive) original items as gifts, I'll share some of my Colorful Thoughts on the subject. Maybe it will help your Christmas shopping be fun.
Since styles, tastes and color preferences differ so widely I tend to look for subject matter. Friends who collect specific items (or have pronounced hobbies) love to receive another interpretation of that item whether it be a painting or sculpture of another fish, bike, owl or cat. The same thing applies when it comes to identifiable locales. A favorite vacation destination, a former city or a special cafe depiction will bring back memories and be loved. I try to keep these items or paintings smallish as they are easier to find a spot for and won't necessitate a redecorating job!
Think about handcrafted gifts that are useful: bookmarks, mugs, jewelry items, journals, vases and scarves. There are many beautiful versions of such and all come in a wide variety of prices.
Slam dunk if you have the contacts and the $$ to commission anything done of the giftee's children or grandchildren...you'll give a winner for sure.
AVOID large pieces that command space unless the recipient has expressed an interest. AVOID specific genres of work (abstract, super-realism etc) unless you know for certain their taste. AVOID expensive items unless they can be returned. AVOID frames that scream; choose benign styles that enhance the work, not fit a room style. AVOID buying if your feelings might be hurt not to see it prominently displayed.
ALWAYS collect information about the artisan: get a card, a flyer or a personal story of meeting them to enhance the gift.
When you give original, it not only provides a special karma for the recipient but it serves to benefit art-making in general and a self-supporting artist in specific. Your gift won't get lost in the department store clutter and will trump the tag "made in China" on any ocassion.
Go forth and give! Enjoy shopping and Merry Christmas,