Art collecting is often a world that is challenging to break in to. Sure, it’s easy to buy art, but collecting is a purposeful, directed, and long-term commitment. But how to get started? That’s where Tappan steps in. Tappan is a digitally native art gallery committed to bringing art back into the common conversation and is the world leader in emerging art.

Their mission is to reinvent the approach to discovering and collecting contemporary art while fostering and supporting the careers of exceptional emerging artists. But their commitment extends to buyers as well. Transparency, by eliminating the stereotypes that have long followed the art buying process, is one of their top values. For buyers, “Tappan offers everything from curatorial services for corporate, large-scale or high touch projects to working one-on-one with personal collectors while streamlining the process of sourcing, buying, curating, installing and shipping.”Two ways Tappan supports artists are through their Artists in Residency Program and the artist’s exchange program. The Residency Program offers free studio time to emerging artists and supports their development through exhibitions, partnerships, and direct connections to collectors, while the exchange program connects artists from two different places and arranges a home and studio swap to encourage further exploration and prospective development.


To begin your art collection, Tappan recommends prospective collectors follow three steps:

1. Find Your Taste

Visit exhibitions, read up on blogs and current art magazines, and get a sense of what you like. Ultimately, you don’t need to know anything about art in order to love it. The more you see, the easier it’ll become to understand what you like and what you dislike. Art can be intimidating, with all the theories and concepts and history, but it’s also the most primal expression of the human condition. Not everything will speak to you, but something will, and that love for a work is something you can always trust.

2. When in Doubt, Ask!

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Sites like Tappan have several Art Advisors who can educate you on everything from aesthetics to information about specific artists. A lot of people are intimidated by art in general, but it’s important to know that there’s no wrong interpretation of work, and there are no wrong questions. In some cases, you might even be able to set up a studio visit to see some of the work in person, which can help you figure out what you like.

3. Pick a Center Piece

Once you’ve found a piece that speaks to you, make it the centerpiece of your collection. Even if you’re not planning on starting a major collection right away, it’s much easier to curate your own gallery wall if you have a single piece as a touchstone. For instance, you can simply expand your collection by looking for pieces that are the same size as your centerpiece and working from there.


For more information on beginning your art collection, visit the Tappan website.

All images courtesy of Tappan.

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