It’s the age—old conundrum for would be art collectors, venturing into the investment market for the first time: I know what I like, but how do I know if it will be appreciated by others and, ultimately, if its value will increase in time?

Clearly this becomes easier the more one becomes used to the vagaries of the market and gains experience. However, many of the factors determining the future value will be just that—in the future and at the time of sale; current trends, the “buzz” around the artist and their work, as well as other elements we could not possibly predict with certainty when purchasing the piece.


Spotting an emerging artist, then, is not an exact science, but there are one or two indicators to point us in the right direction.  Firstly, there is no substitute forgaining some knowledge and insight from those who have invested for a number of years and become used to knowing the market—a “sense of smell” for what will be collectable and what will not. They may well have already reaped the rewards from their investment and be able to indicate what it was that drew them in the first place to this new name in the art world. They may now well have their finger on the pulse of what is now going to be the next one.

Secondly, a little bit of your own research into an artist’s background and what they have achieved to date (however large or small) may be a help. For example, have they won any awards? Where has their work been exhibited, either as a solo artist or along with others? Have they received any commissions of note, either for public or private collections? Such information can be accessed easily via Google or when browsing on the Luminaire Arts website gallery.

One of the many artists with promise is Fadhi Mikhail, British born to Egyptian parents and who already has had private Royal commissions; both Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cambridge have requested him especially to create some of his work for their own collections. Mikhail, heavily influenced by images enjoyed in children’s literature, has also won prestige prizes around the world and has even been chosen to design a stamp for the Royal Mail!

Fadhi is not the only artist with whom one may wish to speculate and buy their art as investment. Daphne Shen’s unique scientific and mathematical stylings have caught the eye of many, not only here in the UK, but in her birthplace of Taiwan. She has exhibited extensively in both countries as a solo artist and with others, but additionally her work sits in collections all over Europe, North and South America and The Far East.

These are but two examples to be found within the unique collections at Luminaire Arts, demonstrating how we may not only choose to buy what appeals to us, but at the same time may also be currently appealing to others around the art world; this may not only be popular now, but could continue to be collectable well into the future. This, together with those invaluable contacts from collectors and investors already out there, making a success of it, can help to answer our queries about venturing into the unchartered world of the art collector and give us confidence to spot those rare gems of emerging artists with whom we can readily look to the future.