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The Key to Art Assessment by Art Historian Dr. Phil H.G. Buschmann

With a little education, anyone can learn to assess and appreciate art. Bel Art Gallery is proud to present the following by Dr. Phil H.G. Buschmann, an accomplished art historian.

The Assessment of a Piece of Art

Which are the most important points when trying to assess a painting? Assessing a painting depends largely on the ability to actually see, perceive, and understand. It is important to see the diversity of shapes, which are the rudimentary part of a painting. Geometric shapes such as the circle, the triangle and the square are the basics of painting composition. Very much equal to geometric shapes is colour. Colour strongly influences the frame of mind, the mood and expression of comprehensive creation and variation. Many contemporary painters have used colours wildly and radically.

Which other features are important when looking at a painting? Content, stylistic harmony, grace, charm, feeling, drama, and movement make a painting complete. Of course, fashion and zeitgeist — the prevailing spirit of the times — also exert a strong influence on a piece of art. The upbringing and artistic background of a painter, as well as his reputation, is another basis for art dealers to determine a realistic sale price.

It is also highly important for an artist to be marketed well and successfully. It is indeed most unfortunate that numerous exceedingly valuable works of art are never seen, because they are just not discovered to be shown to the public.

Abstract Art

How is the content of an abstract painting to be understood? Each artist creates his own form of expression or, as it were, his language, which he recreates on the canvas. Every line, every space, and the interaction of light and shadow are a direct expression of his art. He who wishes to understand the painting must try to comprehend these forms of expression since an artist sees — "PAINTS" — that which others only feel or envisage but are incapable of actually seeing. What then really is art?

Well, since the fantasy of a painter often exceeds the narrow confines of our imagination, art cannot be constrained by set rules or limits and restrictions. More often than not, a painter is way ahead of our time and is a prophet leading to the future. These visions mostly elude the ordinary viewer since he is imprisoned in the reality of his own world. To be able to identify a contemporary painting as a valuable object, it is necessary to have fantasy, exhilaration, and vision into the future.

For art lovers, art does not represent just an investment; it is an expression of beauty and inspiration with which he lovingly surrounds himself!