Please sign in to post.

Where to purchase original pieces of art

My wife and I would like to know where in europe can we find original pieces of art for sale at decent prices. In the states, we love to peruse local art boutiques featuring student works and local hobbyists. We don't want to spend a fortune, but wouldn't mind spending $100 - $150 depending on the piece.

Where in europe is this possible? Paitings, Prints, Sketches and Sculptures all apply to this question.

Posted by
12040 posts

If you want cheap art, try eastern Europe, particularly the Balkans. I picked up some beautiful paintings in Sofia for less than $50.

Posted by
658 posts

For $150.00 you have to take the long shot approach. The best place to go is to the art school student summer exhibitions. We've done this in London, Paris, Amsterdam and Prague. First we look for something small that we really like. It has to be small because we live in a small house, it has to be something we like because it's going to be hanging on the walls for a long time. Buying an unframed piece keeps the cost down. Back home we get it framed and hang it up. For that price you are really restricting yourself to watercolours, pen and ink line drawings or small pieces of pottery. We have been able to buy originals direct from students at Cafe Danzig in Amsterdam and the grand opera house bierkeller in Prague. A lot of students sell original work there. As always, a lot was not to our taste, some was but we couldn't afford, but some we bought.

Posted by
800 posts

Jeremiah - we have started a tradition of finding a piece of "art" from each of our annual Europe trips. It started with buying sketches from Piazza Navona in Rome. I know these are just "tourist" offerings but in a great frame (the framing is MUCH more costly than the original purchase!) they look wonderful in our home and we enjoy taking people on our "tour" of our travel wall. We have stumbled onto local art shows in the Cotswolds, taken Rick's suggestions for prints for sale in Rothenburg, purchased ceramics and small drawings on paper in Sicily. I guess my suggestion is to get away from the big cities - with the exception of Rome, I realize that all of our art is from a smaller town. We have a great painted glass sunflower from Assisi with a picture of all of us gathered around the artist. His brochure shows him with a similar painting that he gave to the Pope. Whether our collections are real art or not, they are valuable reminders of our trip.

Posted by
12154 posts

No one has mentioned flea markets or auction houses.

Flea markets can be a great place for a find, but you'll wade through a lot of junk and hopefully enjoy the cultural experience.

Auction houses have all kinds of art, furniture and home accessories. Sometimes a perfectly nice picture doesn't capture anyone's imagination and you can buy it in your range. This is another cultural experience where the average American is never seen.

I think the story of how you found a piece is half the interest when it's hanging on your wall at home.

I usually take it off any frame, roll it up and carry it or mail it home in a mailing tube. Then have it framed here.

Posted by
3428 posts

I love watching the many "street artists" in Europe. You can get lovely pieces that will remind you of your trip. I've seen them in Salzburg, London, and lots of other places.