Art is Unregulated.
Art is Global.
Art is Portable.
Decades ago, I was analyzing how art can be priced to help the world. Scarcity and the increase in art prices happens but only after a long wait for the artist to pass away. Only a few people can afford that luxury, and some investors are older than the artists.
Art is Unregulated. You can buy art for a dollar and sell it for a million dollars. If you do this with stocks, metals, real estate, etc., you can get in trouble. If you do this with art, you will get praised. Art is Global. You can support anyone's art, anywhere in the world. Art is Portable. You can have your art shipped, displayed or stored anywhere in the world.
A faster, more predictable way for scarcity and price increase to happen is if artists announce that they are following their own proposed price increase schedule and are stopping their own production once a quantity gets reached. You will notice that this same principle is already done on limited edition dolls and comic books. We just need to use it on original fine art! This can be a binding agreement between the artist and the investors and art collectors added to the artist commisson, which is a contract. The artist commission, the contract, provided that there are safety provisions, can be traded between investors and collectors, even before the completion of the works.
Remember that artists partnering with investors and art collectors are no longer alone at this point. A large investor or investment company who reserves 100 works from the same artist will have the budget to promote the artist. Artists who become famous cannot be rendered unfamous. Smaller investors will also gravitate towards that artist in the hope of piggybacking whatever methods of promotion the larger investor has up their sleeve. Investment companies and investment banks already have a Rolodex list of contacts they can sell the art to. They just need to add a few new sales agents to fit in a vacant office next door. Remember too that a lot of companies have quarterly financial statements that could use help. They can report a Potential Revenue from art, which results from the difference between the Current Street Market Value and the Cost of Acquistion. The Current Street Market Value may either be the current price point of the artist, or the highest resell price a fellow investor may have announced.
Let us look at an example. An artist's current asking price is $100,000, but there are no announcements of price increase and scarcity. Investors can only wonder when the next price increase will happen and they also think that as soon as demand is produced, the artist will prosper by making too many pieces. These possibilities are what is stopping them from acquiring art.
However, if the artist announces that he or she will only produce 100 pieces at $100,000, after which the prices will increase, then investors can speculate better. The sooner the 100 pieces are acquired by them and others, the sooner the price will increase. Because art is unregulated, the artist can announce an price schedule that increases exponentially, or geometrically. The magic is that in ten price points, $100,000 at the start can reach $51,200,000 on the tenth. I'm just capping this discussion at $51,200,000, but higher prices are possible. For example, an artist can decide to stop producing sooner, even while the collecting hasn't slowed down. On the other hand, as more invest and collect, prices can still go up.
$100,000 > $200,000 > $400,000 > $800,000 > $1,600,000 > $3,200,000 > $6,400,000 > $12,800,000 > $25,600,000 > $51,200,000.
As you can see above, as soon as the next price point is reached, even the last investment company who acquired art at the last previous price point can report a doubling of the investment value in their quarterly financial statement. I'm mentioning quarterly, because they happen every three months, and the goal for all this is to assist businesses and investors to profit and / or increase values for their companies while not interfering with their own day to day products and actual business. Investors can even resell with discounts. The next investor can just wait for the next price point to also report a positive increase. A large investment company can, for example, reserve 100 works, and promote and make the artist famous and in demand for a total of $51,200,000. This is why there might be a run for the artist as soon as such an announcement is made.
As I have said, this preoccupation started decades ago. It occurred to me that anyone can make this announcement. Any investment company can also adopt an artist and invest. If this succeeds, what we are actually doing is borrowing money and attention from the future, so we can make a lot of art today, make money for ourselves, and improve the world economy. We might make a lot of art that the next future generations will still be continuing to trade the art we produce now. My question was, how can we assist the future in trading the art we produce now?
Self-Publishing Books to Up the Ante:
Memoirs, Biographies & Art Books
The answer I came up with is publishing books, and the best books that can come with the original art are memoirs, biographies and art books. Self-publishing has become easy to do! You can write 10 books and simultaneously release them without the permission of publishing giants. Both now and in the future, collectors and investors would appreciate having the memoirs, biographies and art books next to the original art and as one way to encourage others to acquire the art from them.
Writing and publishing books is another higher step in adding value to art. This is like two steps up and one step down. This is also the marketing approach of triangulation - with books, the artist is perceived as having additional points of interest or a wider, more stable foundation and reason for becoming collectable. However, remember too that getting a writer or a ghost writer involved in the writing process is an acceptable practice. The artist himself does not need to write the books. Investors and collectors are also encouraged to write their own art-related memoirs, biographies and art books of their collection. This increases the visibility of the art pieces.
Here is a funny possibility. If an artist or investor or art collector contracts or even barters with 5 writers, 5 books can simultaneously be produced within the same period of time. This is how you one up the competition.
Self-publishing continues to even out the playing field worldwide, because there are online companies which can print and ship books in less than a week. E-books can be immediately available as soon as they are uploaded. The online publishers only need two pdf files per book: the full-color cover file and the interior which may be black and white (memoirs and biographies) or full-color (art books). Being included in the databases of bookstores and libraries is possible for a few steps, most of them free. Local bookstores can also decide to carry the books.
Once again, returning to the current asking price of the artists. A person who charges $5 per art piece can still publish books. A person who charges $5,000,000 per art piece can also publish books. In the past, even famous artists need the big publishing houses to publish for them. Not anymore. Remember that even expensive artists can use the boost that publishing provides.
I have seen this happen. A group of four young men walked into a gallery where I happened to be at. They asked if they can invest in art that will increase in value. The gallerist told them they can only encourage people to purchase art that they will like. The investors walked away. There was another group of two people who confidently asked the same question in another gallery and they were also turned away. Now, if the artists and their galleries decide that they will double their prices after a certain number has been sold, the galleries would not be lying if they convey this to those people who walked in.
There was this gallery owner whom I talked to about my idea of publishing books of the art and artists she carried. Her answer was, the idea of publishing sounded good, but she said, "That sounds like too much work." She also said that as soon as a book gets published, the artists will feel bigger and more independent that they will look for a bigger and better gallery. In the hour that I was looking at the art in her gallery, before I even talked to her, she was painstakingly pasting the brown paper covering in the back of a newly framed painting. She closed her gallery after a year because business was slow.
There are galleries who agree to resell work purchased earlier at high prices, but they are obviously discounted and considered "used" or "previously-owned." They are made available to art collectors who want a certain artist, but at a bargain. However, the galleries cannot maintain a huge inventory of "used, previously-owned, second-hand art," because it will make their clientele think twice about "investing" in the new art that they carry. It still boils down to only buying what you like for your home, and not as investments. If our idea of the exponential increase in art is promoted, then everything, from the first art piece to the latest becomes an investment and trading art becomes a healthy endeavor.
100% Art + 100% Writing = 1,000+%
I acknowledge the fact that an artist can simply tear up paper, catalog the pieces, take photographs of each piece and publish the art book. I respect that - the simple act went through the publishing process.
I made a few conscious decisions for myself. I came up with this idea of exponential pricing and announcement of the number of works, and I wanted to become my own example, to show that things can still be achieved even if the process seemed difficult. I make one-of-a-kind porcelain dolls, because this art takes many stages to accomplish. I also want to incorporate gemstones and precious metals in my works, so that my collectors can have my works in a glass case that everyone will want to view when they host a party and also so I and my investors can eventually justify an asking price of $51,200,000. I just need to tell everyone that the art they acquire will be in art books that have yet to be published. Because my art books have yet to be published, I decided to write more than one memoir. I did not feel that one book would be enough to encourage other artists, investors and art collectors to write and publish their books as well. If I wanted to become leader, I had to make it harder for myself. However, with mastery comes ease. I don't feel my art is difficult. I also have plans to write more books. Each art book can showcase 150 works, so I'm also looking at more than 10 art books for myself, because I want to make 160 works per price point.
There is something I discovered for myself, and a few other artists I have helped publish.
100% effort in art + 100% effort in writing and publishing = 1,000+% boost in self-image, self-worth, self-respect and self-confidence. It feels different when you tell people you have a few books on Amazon.com. I started my first attempt at a book-length memoir in 2005, and finished the draft in 2006. I got a few copies printed just to see my name on the cover of a book. "To see is to believe" is a relevant notion. Even though my book still needed to be edited and revised, I proved to myself that writing a book can be done. I followed this with the publication of a 150+ page book of my 130 nude drawings and paintings. And now I have four memoirs. It can be done and I encourage everyone to do this.
I met a 70-year old friend, Richard Lau, at church two years ago. We hit it off and started hanging out. He had seen my art and my books, and he also said he painted. He showed me some works on his cellphone, but he never told me how many paintings he had because he left them in Michigan. He finally brought them to Chicago, and we photographed them for two days, after which I spent three months making his book. He had a total of 273 works! It occurred to me that the big volume looks substantial, except that it is a little more pricey than a thinner one. So I made one big volume, with 273 works, and two smaller editions, Volume 1 with 133 works and Volume 2 with 140 works.
The good thing about this approach is that Richard only needs to paint about 135 works to make Volume 4. Then, as soon as he paints another 135, Volume 5 will be simultaneously published together with a second big book.
So now Richard instantly got 3 books instead of just one. It's a way to one-up the competition. The speed of producing his book, and the number of books he now has, come from the fact that we did not need to ask the permission of any big publisher nor listen to any naysayers including relatives, friends and others around us. This is one way to one-up the competition. There are many ways to skin a cat. After producing the big book, I randomly selected and reshuffled the pages I had already formatted.
Now, imagine Richard, who at 72 years of age, tells people he has three art books he had authored on Amazon.com. Whoever buys Richard's art from the 273 are assured that their work is included in two already-published books. If they want to resell, they just need to give away the books to potential investors and art collectors or direct them to Amazon.com.
Art is Universal.
Art is for Everyone.
Like I said earlier, an artist can tear up paper and present it as art. Anyone can become an artist. I simply chose to make mine more complicated. Here are possible scenarios.
You're an artist represented by a gallery. You and the gallery agree to double your price after the sale of a certain number of works. That will entice your contacts to purchase or reserve sooner than later.
I was on the bus one time, and I saw a veteran who was impeccably dressed in his uniform. He had lost a hand in battle. I know some people will support him if he became an artist. This cannot possibly become a handout, because he can write his memoir and announce his price increases and quantities like everyone else.
I once saw a printout of a dad and his 4 daughters on a window. The message under the image said something like, "Please help us. Our dad has cancer and we need money for his bills. We want him to live." Then there was a phone number and an email address. The family can make art. The same conditions apply, they can publish an art book or even a color storybook with their art, announce their pricing and quantities, and make money. There will be people who will support them.
The homeless have art, they have a little exposure. They have a story to tell. Approach them and come up with an agreement. They have to produce enough to be published.
The YouTube videomakers get famous for their views. Recently, there has been a demonetization of their videos. They already know how to write and make presentations because a good number of them write their speeches and scripts. They already have a following. They can make art that reflect themselves, their content and their views. Art can be a way to continue to support themselves.
I'm into the paranormal. There are famous paranormal experts and UFO abductees who have already written their books, and they include their own drawings of how their abductors and their UFO vehicles look like. There will be people who will want a living room full of drawings and even pencil rubbings from these famous personalities. They already have their books about their experiences and publishing art books of the original art they sell to the public will halp authenticate the works.
A group of people with the same interest can publish books as a group. I would like to see art from a group of veterans, for example. Or even victims of war. Or cancer survivors. The LGBTQ community. I would think an art book from a group of drag queen performers would be fun to look at. People are talking negatively about art that they find sacrilegious, I believe that they can change the situation by making religious art more visible.
I believe that people will start chasing the art of people nearby. I have always told myself that even a janitor's closet can have art for sale.
This Idea can Help Big Business
and the World Economy
I always bring up two instances to show why we should look into this. Greece and Bernie Madoff. Greece a while back was unable to pay off their World Bank loan. If they come to an agreement with and promoted just 5 artists who start at $100,000, who reach $25,600,000, they will be able to pay off their World Bank loan. Mr. Madoff supposedly should have generated a total of 65 billion dollars in revenue for his investors. Get your pen and paper and see if I'm correct. Had he contracted and promoted one single artist who produced 160 works per price point, from $100,000 to $51,200,000, he would have produced that much in potential revenue and opted to pay off his investors with the art or money, and opted to close shop before he got found out.
Lately, there is a German bank that needed an infusion of $8.5 billion dollars. Every once in a while we are reminded of the $19 trillion dollar debt by the US. There is a chance that art can help, or create another bubble. As far as the possibility of a bubble is concerned, art is not like other products. The original works can only be produced by the same artist who can stop production as agreed upon. The total number of works circulating at a give period in time will be less than the total produced, because art collectors buy art to keep, and not to recirculate.
Let Us All Meet and
Form Manageable Groups
As I have said earlier, artists, investors and art collectors should meet and form manageable groups. Because it is acceptable to have writers and ghost writers to write books for the artists, investors and art collectors, then we should also involve others in the group. This includes writers and ghost writers, photographers to take pictures of works, desktop publishing professionals, book designers, editors and proofreaders. Galleries, gallerists, artist agents and representatives should also get involved because they already have spaces and contacts and might help in sales. Others who have contacts with investors and art collectors can also join in, and this is why I am encouraging everyone to share commissions with each other. I have designed a database to loosely track who referred whom. There will also be people in the group who would have meeting and art spaces to share. Lawyers can make the art commission contracts. Some might be happy to barter their time and talent, while some might ask for money. Especially as the demand, prices and earnings go up, everything is possible.
Some artists have a current price of $5 for their works, and some investors have the same budget. Some charge $5,000 and some have that same budget. Some will be matched at $100,000 and up. This is why everyone should meet and eventually form smaller manageable groups from the larger groups. We just need to respect everyone's space and the range of involvement, motivations and financial budgets they have set for themselves. Expect that cliques will form.
Register and Have a
Wait and See Attitude
I have talked to galleries, financial establishments, artists and many others. Some artists cannot be bothered, and some cannot see themselves getting into huge commitments. One artist has told me that he writes, and has, in fact, thousands of pages of writings, but he would never share them with anyone because he writes as part of his own therapy. Someone said my idea takes out the "mystery" in art. Some artists are agreeable, but they need contacts and so this is why people should meet. I also believe that would-be artists will do this. If I had work space for people to meet and make art and books, I would open it to everyone.
I have distilled that people want to have a wait and see period before getting into this, because investors will be spending money, while artist find it difficult to imagine coming up with books at a time when they are still supposedly struggling with their visual art. I have also talked to some people from the financial industry, who have said that once this becomes an accepted, popular trend, the financial industry will find a way to make this business model more and more efficient.
It is also possible that some companies can come up with their own apps and software to facilitate trade art online.
I encourage all of you to register and propose or sponsor events in your locales. You can answer as little or as much as you want in your profiles. You may or may not choose to identify yourself. Discuss this idea. Tell everyone your reservations and conditions. Get yourself situated because I believe that most of us are just waiting for one huge investment company to announce a more serious commitment to this idea.
Features on This Site
I am encouraging people to entertain commissions and be generous with it. Everyone who makes a sale may or may not entertain it, but I believe that encouraging commissions will greatly speed up sales. You will also be able to schedule meetings. I encourage programmers to come up with better apps if they can.