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10 Secrets to Success in Art Licensing

Lance J. Klass

Secret #10 – Representational Art Sells
Better than Abstracts



There are a lot of abstract art pieces out there that are quite beautiful but, most commercial art licensees want representational art. Remember that shopping mall survey I recommended above? See how many abstracts you come upon versus images that are clearly recognizable.

I’ve had to turn down a whole lot of artists who do beautiful abstracts just because they’re too difficult to license. If I got very lucky I might find a print company that would want them but even so, would the prints sell?

Some years ago my wife and I were at the famous Tate Gallery in London while they were running a huge exhibit of abstract works. We had plenty of time to walk through and look at the paintings because the exhibit hall was deserted. Leaving that exhibition, we walked twenty feet to another hall crowded with people. On the walls were the extremely realistic and beautiful works of English pre-Rafaelite painters. More people entered the room in the half hour we were there; few left. I learned something that day at the Tate, and you should learn it too.

Of course there are more secrets. These are just some of the main ones. Do you have a great tip that’s helped you license more art? Share it below!

© Lance J. Klass

Featured Author: Lance J. Klass
Lance J. Klass is the President of Porterfield’s Fine Art Licensing, a full-service international art licensing agency with a major internet presence at Porterfieldsfineart.com. Mr. Klass has been licensing the works of artists to companies that depend on compelling new art for their products, since his first license in 1985, and is recognized as an experienced authority on the subject of art licensing.


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