Good Advice for Choosing an Online Art Gallery

ARTISTS. If you plan to sell (or buy) original art through an online gallery, check out the credentials and expertise of the people running it. Not all galleries are run by professionals experienced in the art market.

NewBloodArtIn fact, some online art platforms operate without much human oversight at all, which can be risky to both artists and buyers. For example, if the online gallery isn’t run by someone who has seen the actual art and built a relationship with the artist, can the buyer have faith that the art is accurately priced, archivally sound, and offers investment potential?

If you are a new or emerging artist, look for a gallery run by an art expert who can mentor you on issues such as realistically pricing work and managing the release of works for sale.

“The emergent stage for an artist is a sensitive one,” explains Sarah Ryan, curator and founder of New Blood Art in the U.K. “If an artist fails to price realistically at the start of their careers they risk damaging their future careers significantly.” For example, if the work that you make available on an online gallery is priced too high, and you later sell that work offline for substantially less than the online price, then your reputation can suffer. Prospective future buyers may feel misled.

New Blood Art understands the importance of accurate pricing and manages it very carefully. The gallery strives to create a steady following of collectors for each artist they represent, and prices are gradually increased in response to demand. Prices go up by securing regular sales from clients who know they are buying at an attractive and realistic price point.

Ryan started New Blood Art in 2004 because she recognized that selling art online “offered an economically viable way of selling truly affordable artwork by talented young artists without being crippled by the overhead of a physical gallery space.”  The staff at New Blood Art visits all of the UK graduate art shows to find the best new talent. The site currently offers more than 2,000 pieces at prices as low as ₤50.00.

“Over the last nine years, we have built good relationships with both the clients we serve and the artists the we represent. We have a good track record for identifying artists that have gone on to do very well and whose work has increased in value over time,” says Ryan.  “As a gallerist, it is vital to get to know artists personally over time, assessing their commitment to their practice and the quality of the work they produce. This insight is key when determining investment potential for clients.”

Ryan not only gets to know the artists whose work appears in her online gallery, she also interacts with art buyers: “I do interact with personally with our clients and often meet with them and speak on the telephone. Without this interaction, I’m not sure we would have the same loyalty.”


ABOVE: One of the works featured on New Blood Art is “Untitled II,” a 175 x 175 cm mixed-media  painting on canvas by artist Emma Devane. A 2012 art-school graduate, Devane  was featured in a newspaper article about the advantages of collecting recently graduated artists.


New Blood Art

About New Blood Art


Collect Limited-Edition Art in Digital Form

ARTISTS. Here’s an example of how technology is transforming how art will be collected, sold, and displayed in the future.  Although this particular site ( is still in the “private-beta” stage, it’s good to be aware of new business models that are being proposed and tried.

S[edition] is a digital platform for collecting contemporary art. With prices starting under $10, S[edition] enables you to view and display limited-edition art by contemporary artists on all of your devices, including your mobile phone, iPad, computer display, and television screens.

The platform was developed to help stimulate the growth of a new generation of collectors. The goal is to make art collecting more affordable, instantly gratifying, more social, and less intimidating.

Featured artists include: Shepard Fairey, Damien Hirst, Isaac Julien, Mat Collinshaw, Michael Craig-Martin, Tracey Emin, Bill Viola, and Wim Wenders.

Every edition is numbered and sold with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by the artist. Certificates are automatically generated upon the completed purchase of an artwork. Then, the certificate and purchased art are stored securely in each collector’s digital “vault.”

As a collector, you can view your purchased art in high resolution or send it to any of your connected devices. You may not print copies of either the certificate of authenticity or the artwork itself. Digital watermarking technology is used to track every purchased edition.

With the free iPad app, you can view or show your entire collection on the iPad anytime, anywhere—even without an Internet connection. The recently announced App for Facebook Timeline lets you show your personal s[edition] art collection to friends, and highlight your favorite artists.

One benefit of buying art through s[edition] is that you can receive regular information directly from the artists, get priority access to new collections, and connect with other collectors.

The creators of s[edition] have announced plans to launch a marketplace through which a collector can sell works to other collectors after editions are sold out .

Gallery owners and artists who are interested in creating a limited digital edition should send an email to: info (at)


About s[edition] art


Five Art and Marketing Technology Trends to Watch in 2012