An increasing number of clients are approaching us with requests to commission artworks. While it might seem like a daunting prospect to approach an artist with a specific request, many of our clients like the idea that their chosen artist is creating a piece of work specifically for them, a work that they have had an active part in the creation of and approach our gallery to help them with the process.
Henry and Amber Pepperall from Balham in London fell in love with Anna Raymond’s vibrant textile works last October at Cavaliero Finn’s stand at the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea. They loved the colour and movement in Anna’s work and the fact that you can look once and then again and continue to see something new. The couple decided to engage Cavaliero Finn’s help in commissioning a piece by Anna to commemorate their 10th wedding anniversary. Cavaliero Finn asked the Pepperalls to provide a list of personal elements that Anna could consider incorporating in their commissioned piece. Confident that they would love Anna’s creation they gave the company some pointers including the discreet appearance of the number 10 for the anniversary and Anna set about working her magic. The commission has recently been completed and arrived shortly after the couple found out that they were expecting their first child; they were over the moon with their commission.
Henry Pepperall said: “We are both delighted with the piece and have hung “Ten” in our living room. It is already drawing compliments from our visitors and makes for a good game, to challenge friends on how many references to our lives they can spot. A nice little surprise was the fact that the number “10” sparkles and catches the light at certain angles, which works really well as we have a chandelier in the middle of the room which provides a great light source.
We are both very glad we had the piece commissioned. Timing wise, it couldn’t have come at a better time, we literally found out 2 weeks ago, that Amber is pregnant, and we are expecting our first child in March 2015, so we have lots to celebrate for our 10th anniversary”.
Do’s and don’ts of commissioning artwork
Commissioning artwork does not have to be difficult or expensive. Cavaliero Finn has put together a short list of Do’s and Don’ts to help client’s commission artwork for their homes.
Make sure you know the artist’s work and be confident that whatever they create you will like.
Ensure you have seen a variety of different works by the artist and that you understand the full scope of their work.
Meet with the artist and discuss what you are looking for in as much detail as possible. Be clear and concise and let the artist know your reasons for commissioning the work.
Make a list of the artist’s work and split them into works that you love, those you like and those you are not keen on and share this with the artist.
Expect to pay a non-refundable deposit of around 50% of the total price of the finished commission.
Get something in writing from the gallery or artist confirming your requirements and make sure you know when the commission will be completed.
Stay in contact with the artist or gallery you’ve commissioned the work through to ensure that you are happy with the progress being made on your commission. Most artists will contact you half way through the commission to ensure that the work is going in the right direction for approval.
Be prepared to wait for your commission, many artists have a programme of shows to provide work for and will fit commissions around these.
Don’t expect to be able to commission an exact replica of a work that has already been sold.
Don’t ask an artist to create a work in a stye they wouldn’t normally do.
Don’t be too prescriptive, you are commissioning a work that is the artist’s creation, not yours.