Regardless of the monetary value, caring for your collection extends beyond maintaining the physical condition. It is important to keep records and a collection history. This will be invaluable for insurance purposes in case of theft or disaster. We recommend individual folders or a binder with tabs for each item in your collection with the following documentation, but the best option is to keep it on a flash drive or some other backup device:
-color photographs of your artwork, with a full-view and close up details—front, back, framed, unframed. Photograph multiple views of three-dimensional art.
-purchase date, price, and title of work (receipt)vendor or gallery information
-artist/maker information (biography)
-detailed description of object’s subject matter or type of work
-dimensions—framed and unframed for two-dimensional works. Overall and base measurements for three-dimensional works.
-media and support datadetailed description of object—include location of scratches, losses, dents, abrasions, etc., that may not be visible in photographs.
-copies of all conservation and appraisal reportstext of inscriptions, markings, and labels
-provenance – ownership history
-bibliographic information if your work is cited in any exhibition catalogues, auction catalogues,exhibition and loan history
Most of the information you need should be available on your sales receipt or available through the vendor or gallery. Take a few minutes today to update your list.