So Christmas is over — ahhh! Hopefully you were thrilled with all the gifts you received — and gave! If that was not the case, you must be hoping next year will be better.  Of course at Caswell Gallery we believe there is nothing better to give, or receive, than art. Yes, it can be a bit chancy, but here are a few tips to guarantee your gift of art will be perfect for the person lucky enough to be on your “nice” list.

Pink PeonieIf you’re an art lover, you probably try to buy gifts that reflect your appreciation for unique works of art. Because an art purchase will probably be a more expensive item than you are likely to purchase at a big box store, you want to feel you are selecting just the right piece for that special recipient. If you are shopping for a painting, it helps to know which painting your loved one covets. If you have that info, than you have no problem. If you arrive at the gallery and that particular piece is no longer available, be sure to confirm its sale. Ask if they can check with the artists to see if he/she has a similar piece in inventory. If not, consider selecting another painting by the artist, but perhaps go smaller. This way, the painting is likely to still work, but not be an unwelcome “commitment” by the recipient.

If a painting is a bold move, consider something smaller. Perhaps a piece of pottery or artRaku_Beverly Curtis (2) glass. These types of items are less expensive and can be a little easier to display and integrate into a decorating scheme. A small piece of sculpture that will inspire an emotional reaction will almost always be perfect.

If purchasing artwork as a gift still makes you a little nervous, consider a book or note cards depicting the work of the preferred artist, a print reproduction, a blown glass “ornament” rather than the bowl or vase, or a utilitarian pottery object, rather than a larger statement piece. Even art jewelry can be displayed as well as worn.

If you’re going in the opposite direction and plan on purchasing a large scale or very expensive piece of art as a gift, be sure to ask about the return policy. Often you will not be PSmith_Mid-cycle-Sundownable to return your purchase for a refund, primarily because of the gallery arrangement with the artist. The gallery may have already paid the artist for their work, and refunding the money would not be possible. Exchanges may not be an option either, so it’s best to be as sure as possible about your purchase.

Art can delight on the most subtle levels (and vice versa). Giving or receiving art can be the epitome of gift giving pleasure. Just make sure to consider the receiver’s taste and preferences, and make the best decision possible with that knowledge. Most likely you can’t go wrong if you consider these suggestions. And yes, Christmas may be over, but Valentine’s Day is a few short weeks away!

Pink Peonie by Brenda Boylan
Raku vases by Bev Curtis
Mid-Cycle Sundown by Phil Smith