Do you feel that you don't know anything about the art world? Are you lost when people start talking about the different art movements? If you're at a party or gallery, and want to make conversation, it's easy to feel lost. So here are some facts about the art world that you can use when talking to art lovers …
1. Record Busting Prices
Just as you think someone can't possibly pay more for a single painting, along comes another record. The current record for the most expensive painting ever sold is a massive $300 million for Paul Gauguin's When Will You Marry? The buyer is unknown, so presumably this very expensive canvas will now sit in a private collection and only be seen by a privileged few.
2. The Great Galleries
Learn something about the great art galleries around the world. You might not be able to visit the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the Hermitage in St Petersburg, or the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain. But you can find out what kind of works they focus on, and some of the famous paintings they contain.
3. The Movements
There are a bewildering number of art movements, and it can be tricky remembering who's a Dadaist and who's an Impressionist. Find out who is associated with the different movements, and the characteristics of each movement, and you'll be able to understand what people are talking about when they refer to the different styles of art.
4. Real Names
Sometimes paintings become popularly known by a different title. You'll gain kudos if you know what they're really called. For example, the famous Mona Lisa is actually called 'La Gioconda', after the name of the sitter, Lisa del Giocondo. 'Whistler's Mother' is really 'Arrangement In Grey And Black No 1'. If you can also learn the full title of some modern artworks such as performance art pieces, you'll sound really knowledgeable.
5. The Story behind Them
It may seem pretty obvious what some famous paintings are about. But sometimes there's a story behind a work of art. Learn why famous works were created, who commissioned them, and what the artist intended to convey. You'll then be able to talk with confidence about famous works and the meaning behind them. Everyone sees something different in a work of art, so don't be afraid to suggest your own interpretation.
6. Different Media
Learn about the different media for making art. There are a number of different media for painting and drawing, plus many different materials for sculpture, and artists sometimes use unusual ones. Art galleries usually detail the medium used on the label by the work.
7. Lives of the Artists
Also find out some facts about the lives of different artists. Many of them lived fascinating lives. For example, Caravaggio killed a man in a fight and died himself under mysterious circumstances. Leonardo da Vinci was extremely knowledgeable in many fields, and was one of the first people to dissect the human body. And many artists in the 19th & 20th centuries moved in the same circles.
There are so many fascinating facts to learn about art, and although you can't know everything, with some knowledge under your belt you'll be able to converse with art lovers (plus you'll learn some new facts from them). Who is your favorite artist, and which artists would you like to have known?