From online marketplaces to student shows, discover artworks you can buy on a budget
Are you over looking for unique, original art that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one. Artsy might have a few artworks under $1,000 but you’ll be pushed to find anything less than that at most traditional art-selling platforms and galleries. That’s why we’ve scouted some of the best places to find art that won’t break the bank.
But what is ‘affordable art’ anyway? With famous artworks going for millions at auction and galleries taking extortionate commissions (which drives up prices just so that artists can make a living) it’s not surprising that buying art has traditionally been thought of as for the ‘rich and wealthy’. But we’re not about this stereotype and believe that anyone should be able to buy art, whatever the budget.
Just because you can’t afford to pay $195 million for an Andy Warhol, doesn’t mean you can’t find incredible art… and we’re here to help point you in the right direction. In this case, we’re focusing on artworks with prices that don’t fall into the quadruple-digit zone so why not check out these art websites, apps and more to find your next (affordable) masterpiece.
BRUSHWRK is a platform focused on helping independent and emerging artists showcase their incredible work and sell art online. We only takes a small 5% fee that goes towards marketing, printing, networking and more to help artists get their work out there.
In comparison to larger galleries and curators – who often charge 40-50% for little-to-no benefits – BRUSHWRK allows artists to price their works more competitively on the platform as they’re not struggling to cover the fees and actually get paid for their work.
From prints under £20 to original artworks under £250, you’re bound to find something you’ll love. Why not check out this stunning print ‘Jazzy’ by artist Sosina or this gorgeous original painting by artist Eden. Or if you’re an artist and thinking “where can I sell my art?” why not upload it to BRUSHWRK!
Affordable Art Fair
If it says affordable in the name it has to be affordable… right? With artworks ranging from £50 to £7,500, it’s definitely on the more budget-friendly end of the scale than its other famous art fair friends. Tickets to the fair also start at under £15, making it more accessible to not just the so-called ‘art elite’.
Located in ten cities around the world, from London to Hong Kong, the mission of the fair is to help democratise the art world by bringing artists and art lovers together in a more inviting, less exclusive space.
If you can’t wait until their next fair, you can also shop their online art gallery via their website. With the option to categorise by price you can make sure you don’t go over budget, as well as searching by medium to help you pick between paintings, photography, prints and more.
Student art sales
It’s grad show season and after spending the last few years building a portfolio of work, students are bound to have art they’re keen to get off their hands and make a bit of cash. Keep an eye out for student works for sale through enterprises such as Made in Arts, which works with University of the Arts London students to help them showcase and sell their work.
This is also a great way to find and support emerging artists at the beginning of their careers. Not only will buying their art help to fund their artist journey (every little counts when you’re starting out) but it means you’re more likely to find something original that no one else has!
Making those first sales post-uni also means so much more to an emerging artist than one who has spent years in the industry. Hear it from one of the artists on Made in Arts: “ I sold a painting for the first time which felt euphoric” – so why not go and support an emerging artist and make their day!
BetterShared was born out of Founder Swakara Atwell-Bennett’s frustration at the underrepresentation of African and Caribbean artists in the art world. Providing a platform to showcase more than 200 artists from Africa and the diaspora, the site has so many incredible artworks to discover.
Although the price of artworks on the platform varies, if you’re looking for incredible pieces on a budget check out their ‘Art under £100’ section. BetterShared also promises that up to 70% of profits go directly to the artists, so you know that they’re supporting a fairer art market system too.
We all know that buying second-hand is not only known to be better for the circular economy but better for your bank. Although famous artworks are notorious for increasing in price each time they are sold at auction, when you're not shopping at Christie's you can actually find second-hand artworks for reasonable prices.
If you’d rather shop in person than buy art online, why not have a look around your local car boot sales or charity shops to see if you can find any hidden gems. You might have to go on a hunt to find the artist if they’re not there to sell it to you but who knows, you might even uncover a long-lost masterpiece!