In this section we let a selection of art lovers – from occasional buyers to art professionals – talk about their perception of art and preferences: where do they want to see art? Where do they purchase art, and above all: from which artists do they buy? Below, an interview with Kris van der Hart, co-founder Embassy of Art.
What does art mean to you?
Art is like a source of energy to me. Art comforts, feeds, stimulates and challenges me. Dealing with art - and dealing with artists - is what drives me. Art makes me happy. And that's what it's all about.
Did you get an appreciation of art from your parents or did you have to find your own way?
My single mother was busy enough, so I had to find my own way in art land. I was a very curious boy, always looking for knowledge. Initially, I found that knowledge in literature, but I later turned to the visual arts.
Where do you get your information about the ups and downs in the art world?
From my network I get new developments passed on fairly quickly, often as an (online) mix of facts, assumptions, entertainment, news and rumours.
Where do you prefer to look at art?
I prefer to be out on the street looking for art: my 'art strolls' pretty much take me everywhere. I enjoy visiting the studio and being in contact with the artist in an environment that is familiar to him of her. I also happily and frequently visit galleries to discover new work there.
How many times a year do you buy art?
That depends. Sometimes a large (read: expensive) work and then nothing for a while, sometimes a few works per quarter. I love scouting young talent and often buy art from the early years of an artist. I prefer to purchase unique works.
And where do you buy: in the gallery, at an art fair, at an auction or online?
Preferably with the artist in the studio, you cannot get closer to the source. On the other hand, you go to a particular gallery for a particular work. At fairs, I sometimes chance upon a work that I fall in love with on the spot - works that have been waiting for me.
Is it important that you and your partner always agree on a purchase?
I have recently moved in with Sybila, this entails that our art collections will be merged as far as possible. Collectors are always short on wall space, which means that new acquisitions must fit into the bigger picture.
Is there a gallery with which you have a special relationship?
I like to visit Galerie Roger Katwijk since I like nearly all artist he shows. At Ron Mandos I am always surprised by the wonderful - un-Dutch - presentations. I follow galleries such as Mini Galerie and No Man’s Art Gallery for their idiosyncracy.
If you had an unlimited budget, from whom would you purchase a work?
As an Amsterdammer with a roof terrace, I would really like to have a large sculpture garden with three major works by Richard Serra. And I would like to have a Rothko (No. 210 / No. 211) to build a private Rothko chapel. Come to think of it, I probably won’t as I would like to share the wonder.
Who are your favourite artists?
We are big fans of Bram Braam. Rough in its material, refined in the finish. Braam is the new poster boy of urban minimalism.
The works of Ossip are enchanting. So many worlds and stories come together in his works and they continue to amaze.
Jan van Munster (Galerie van den Berge and Galerie Ramakers) Artist who has been working nicely for a long time based on clear concepts and always moves me with that.
Gé-Karel van der Sterren. Critical, colorful and always with a lot of humor.
I saw a beautiful show featuring Sven Kroner’s floating ships at Fons Welters Gallery years ago. I have been a true fan of his work ever since.