Affordable Art in Sydney?
October 27, 2010 11:11 PM   Subscribe

[SydneysiderFilter] Where can one buy affordable art for home decoration in Sydney?

Okay, so I am trying to learn to paint. But, it will be a while before I can paint something that I can put up on a wall without embarrassment.

So, where in Sydney (Australia) do I go to buy affordable (less than A$100/item) art (paintings, framed photos etc.) to put up in my home? My interests are quite wide-ranging - landscapes, portraits, still life etc. - and I am also quite fascinated by aboriginal art.

I am interested in more than just stores. Are there areas where art students put up their works for sale? Are there stores that specialize in these sort of things? Are there websites for this, and are they reliable?

Has anyone tried getting photos printed on canvas in Sydney? Which website does it well?

In essence, the bare walls need some color. Please tell me what to do.
posted by vidur to Shopping (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Try the art school exhibitions - both university, tafe and private. I don't know if there is a list you can subscribe to know when exhibitions are on, but there will be many on soon as it is the end of semester/year.

Keep in mind that quality paint and canvases, frames and glass aren't cheap so you may not get much in the way of quality materials used in under $100 pieces, plus the artist has to make something.

You shouldn't be afraid or embarrassed to make your own cheap, changeable unsigned art. For example, paint six small cheap canvas boards each a different solid complimentary colour, frame them say in op-shop frames and arrange them on the wall in a way that compliments the room/space... stuff like that. Use your need to decorate your walls as a way to explore composition, colour and texture; you can't make mistakes when you are playing.
posted by Kerasia at 12:17 AM on October 28, 2010

Best answer: Head down to the Rocks Market. Some nice stuff in the stalls there. Then wander through the rest of the art and craft stores in the general area.
posted by tra at 1:25 AM on October 28, 2010

Best answer: You've just missed the annual Affordable Art Show, but it may be worth a look at the exhibitors to find out where they are.

Glebe Picture Framers always has a gallery of art for sale of all sorts.

The annual Glebe Art Show also has works for sale, it's usually held in August each year at Benledi House.

There also used to be a gallery run by Oxfam in Leichhardt that sold Aboriginal art with no commission.
posted by girlgenius at 1:52 AM on October 28, 2010

I think you will find that can't buy real art for A$100. However for a little more you should be able to get some original pieces by younger artists from Galleries around Redfern / Central / Newtown / SurryHills area.

I've not lived in Sydney for 3 years but used to go to the smaller gallery openings occasionally and have bought a few works by friends.

Places like say First Draft, Wilson St Gallery, that place on Abercrombie near Cleveland St. um, can't think of the names of them now; there's a little gallery in Redfern behind / parallel with Abercrombie. There are one or two galleries down the bottom of King St Newtwon.
posted by mary8nne at 2:22 AM on October 28, 2010

Response by poster: Kerasia, thanks for your encouraging words. I'll see if can locate some art school exhibitions. I should've figured the price bit on my own, given that I have seen the prices of art supplies.

girlgenius, the Affordable Art Fair 2010 seems to be scheduled for November 11-14, so I guess I haven't missed it. Thanks for the tip!

tra, thanks. Heading to the Rocks market this weekend.

mary8nne, thanks. I'll have a look at the places/areas suggested.
posted by vidur at 3:55 PM on October 28, 2010

I'm not sure that you'll get much joy from ArtSydney in the price range you're looking at.

We've been for the past couple of years and "affordable" really is a very subjective term. We were really shocked our first year - there's usually not a great deal of work to be had for under $1K, we were thinking $100+.

I wouldn't let that stop you from attending though - tickets are a reasonable price and it's always good to check out what's around.

As for affordable. We did a big wall of strange/odd record albums in frames (bought from eBay, from a lovely seller in Sydney & albums were mostly purchase from egg in Newtown) before we could afford anything else.

I think it looked fabulous!
posted by the.carol.baxter.experience at 1:37 AM on October 29, 2010

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