A good analogy for the cost of art is the handbag.   Price and Quality seem to have a pretty linear relationship, as they are correlated up to a point.  But then at that certain point price increases much faster than quality as a result of the ‘name’, exclusivity and simply demand.

Let’s look at major influences of the price of artwork:

  • Royalties: who took the photos, painted the canvas or sculpted the medium and how much does their reputation influence demand
  • The Medium: what materials were used and how costly are they to manufacture or produce
  • Size: how much of the medium is utilized
  • Exclusivity: how many are available for purchase
  • Be sure factor in: the cost of framing, and shipping


Under $100 ea

Finding a piece of artwork for under $100 that’s interesting, meaningful and isn’t also hanging in the bathroom of your favorite local eatery is do-able, it just may take a bit more leg work.  Check sources like ZGallerie.com that offer a dedicated selection of framed art for under $100.

This 22″x22″ framed Canal Grande by ArtistNina Papiorek can be purchased at ZGallerie for $89.98

Under $150 ea

For a huge selection of artwork including the ability to customize the frame your best bets are likely framed posters or prints from Barewalls.com.

The below poster of New York’s Central Park is 24×36 and sells for just $13.12.  Add custom framing and matting and the online price climbs to over $200, but do some research and purchase art in standard sizes that will fit a store-bought pre-made frame and you may be able to cut that framing cost significantly.

24″x36″ poster from Barewalls just $13.12, but framing costs will punch up the ticket substantially.

Lily of the Valley by Steven Meyers 24.5″ x 20.5″ comes framed for $124.26 through Barewalls.com


Under $250 ea

This price range can allow you to curate beautifully framed photography, a canvas print, lithography or giclee typically sized 27″ x 27″ or smaller.

$175 for a reproduction of Vincent Van Gogh’s exquisite “Almond Blossom,” which he painted for his newborn nephew as a symbol of budding life, embraced one of his favorite subjects: flowering branches against a blue sky. This 27″ x 27″ lithography is $24.99 PLUS an additional $150 framing

 $250 and up

Price points north of $250 take us into the realm of fine art.  If you are shopping in these price points you likely already have a favorite artist or gallery.

If you don’t yet, we like Fineartamerica.com because they enable independent artists and photographers to upload their work and Fine Art America fulfills each order on behalf of the artists – taking care of the printing, framing, matting, packaging, shipping, collecting payments from the buyers, and sending profits to the artists.   Each print is manufactured at Fine Art America’s production facility and delivered “ready-to-hang” with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

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