“You don’t have to be a Rockefeller to collect art. I thought I was rich having good art,” Herbert Vogel
To build a collection, one does not have to buy big in fact, buying small from relatively unknown artists is the perfect way to begin. Buying what you like is important regardless of market value. Go out and dedicate yourself to what is happening with young artists and emerging ones as well and find out what is going on in your community and local art hubs. Budget constraints are just an excuse because if the Vogels could do it on a 23,000-dollar budget, anyone can. Prints are not the only starting point for buying art just because of the lower prices. Yes your tastes will change but that is what made the Vogel collection the greatest collection ever, it mirrored them through the years. Their passion for collecting turned them into improbable celebrities. They became working-class heroes among the throng of elitists in Manhattan. Herb’s dedication to the Cedar Tavern was for the purpose of just listening as artists such as, De Kooning and Kline, bellowed at each other time and again over the meaning of abstract expressionism. Herb was rooted in his chair listening, absorbing and learning.
Art collecting is almost a drug, once you begin and start to live with the pieces you purchase, your life changes dramatically. Not only are you living with the art, but you are also either consciously or unconsciously thinking about it every day; so without trying, art becomes a part of you. Art should make you feel something or it should do something to you, whether it is positive or negative is irrelevant; it is doing something to you.
Artists have a unique capability of understanding humanity with more insight and sensitivity than common non-artistic mortals, they seem to be plugged into the world. With a bit of luck, art might change one’s life. Art drives people and forces one to advance and evolve. If you let it, by abandoning oneself to art, it will infuse your life and inundate the senses. Contemporary art can and will turn us into a student once again.
Contemporary art can be intimidating and inaccessible. People feel as though they need to explain why or why they do not like a certain piece. You do not have to explain anything because you do not need to theorize art to like it. The important thing is to look, because art is visual.
Becoming fully immersed in the art world, not only purchasing pieces, but also visiting the creators in their studios, immersing yourself in galleries, shows and literature and becoming a sponge willing to learn every second of every day will bring you closer to feeling art. So much of contemporary art at first glance can be difficult and that is why you must see it again and again and again because it does grow on you. The brain needs time to reflect from the visual onslaught sent through the eyes although, the Vogels took the visual information and sent it straight down to their souls bypassing the brain. They did not process art in their minds and as such, their collection is one of the greatest of our times.