Introduction to collecting art

Course Dates: 11/07/21 - 25/07/21
Time: 10:00 - 13:00
Location: Online
Everything you wanted to know about collecting contemporary art, but were afraid to ask: How and where to buy art in today’s marketplace. Know your lithographs from your etchings, auctions from online and commission from conservation.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Book your place
In stock
Full fee £109.00 Senior fee £87.00 Concession £55.00

Course Code: VH367

Sun, day, 11 Jul - 25 Jul '21

Duration: 3 sessions (over 3 weeks)

Or call to enrol:020 7831 7831

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

This course is about gaining the confidence to make the first steps as a collector – taught by an enthusiastic collector who understands both media and market.
The contemporary art market is booming, even ebay and Amazon are getting in on the act. No longer only the preserve of the wealthy, collecting has become affordable. People who once bought mass production prints from a department store are now buying originals.
Are you possibly interested in buying but intimidated by galleries and nervous of online purchasing? Perhaps you have thought about starting a collection but you’re put off by jargon and are wary of the pitfalls.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- Understanding media: the difference between a limited edition lithograph and photolithography, Know your woodcuts from your laser cuts, your silkscreens from your inkjets.
- Primary and secondary markets: Buying online (buying unseen with confidence), - Buying direct from artists (open studios), Buying from galleries (assessing value/making an offer)
- Commissioning from an artist
- Buying from auction houses (Buyers premium and commission), Attribution/certification
- Making a collection (themes and styles) Framing/mounting, Maintaining/conserving.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

Have an understanding of art media and production methods – and the jargon
- Understand the current contemporary art marketplace: where to look, where to go
- Have the confidence to make a purchase/start a collection
- Have some understanding of how to care for your purchase(s).

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

You do not need any particular skills to undertake this course.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Talks, group discussions and hand outs. The course will aim to draw out and develop students personal interests whilst at the same time introducing new ideas.
You will receive regular feedback from your tutor throughout the course, as and when appropriate. At the end of the course you and your tutor are asked to assess the progress you have made.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring a notebook and pens/pencils.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Art History courses.

Charles Chambers

Charles is an artist, designer and theorist with over twenty-five years experience; initially as a freelance illustrator working for major publishers and magazines, and for two decades as Creative Director of an award-winning west-end design agency. Greatly experienced himself as an adult learner, he was an art and design graduate first in the 1980’s but then returned to university – whist working full-time – to gain a First Class degree in architecture followed by a Master’s (with distinction) in architectural theory. He now divides his time between printmaking, small architectural projects and since 2011 teaching a range of subjects at CityLit: including cultural history and theory to creative practitioners, interior design and drawing. He says: “Teaching is the most rewarding experience I have had in a long career in the world of art and design. There is really nothing to compare with the complete engagement of a group of learners in full spate!” Summer also finds Charles afloat, teaching sailing and racing his own small boat. For more information go to and

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.