When tasked with curating my first collection for Artfinder, I was a bit daunted. With more than 400,000 artworks listed, it felt like boiling the ocean to bring just a few items to the surface. I needn’t have feared; whether just browsing or searching for specific pieces by subject, style or medium, I soon found artists and artworks I really liked. And more often than not they were extremely affordable.
I always think works on paper provide an affordable way to start collecting from quality artists, and almost half of the pieces I have selected are drawings, prints and watercolours. The artists I have curated all combine technical skill with compelling subject matter and I would be proud to have any of their artworks on my walls.
Jane Daniell’s prints depict a rich and imaginative interior landscape full of dreams and magical narratives, so it’s not surprising to learn she is also an illustrator of children’s books. My children would have loved one of her pieces in their bedrooms when they were younger.
Katrin Roth represents excellent value. Her smaller pieces are very expressive, combining dynamic composition, strong colours and bold mark-making to dramatic effect.
The massive oil portraits of “marginal poets’ by Yi Wei are priced at over £13k, but if you’re looking for a signature piece that will cover your whole wall and potentially tap into the strong investment returns being achieved by leading Chinese artists, then maybe this is not such an outrageous price after all.
True creativity is not pigeon-holed or bound by media. Some artists work in many different media, using their skills and experience in one to support experimentation in another. With Tin Odescalchi, you can see how the strong painterly quality of her oils is reflected in her magical, and more affordable, smaller works in silk and wool.
If your walls are by now full, then there is still always space for a sculpture. For me, one sculptor in particular stands out on Artfinder: Nicola Beattie. Her stone works, whether abstract or functional, create beautiful forms and vessels while keeping one hand on the raw materials. Her pieces make you want to both contemplate and touch, not to mention definitely own!
Browse Alex’s curated collection
Cover image via Yi Wei