How to improve the collector's physical relationship to the artwork?

The online art market is growing fast, with a 15% increase between 2016 and 2017 (source: Hiscox Report). Despite this increase, there are still several issues that still prevent collectors buying online. The main challenge is the impossibility of seeing the work. Buyers worry about the reliability of the images and wonder if the artwork is different when they see it in the flesh.

It is therefore important to use all possible means to improve the physical relationship to work and reassure the collector.

Photos of artworks

Photos remain the best way of conveying the artwork to collectors. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • First, all photos be in a high quality resolution, the work must be well lit without any shadows or light glare;
  • Choose photos without margins, outlines, inscriptions, captions or copyright; 
  • Always include an image that focuses solely on the artwork. The photo must be taken head on to prevent the work from being distorted because of the angle of the photograph; For paintings, photos, and editions the work must be cut out  and for the sculptures you have to make sure that the background is a plain as possible so as not to distract the collector;
  • Add several pictures! One photo is often not enough for the collector to grasp the scale of the work as well as all the details. On Artsper, a second image is obligatory for the paintings and sculptures.
    • Add pictures that focus on a detail of the work, for example, it could focus on the impasto paint work;
    • For a sculpture, photographs taken from several angles help the collector to build a better physical relationship to the work;
    • It’s also helpful to include a photograph of the work in situ (preferably real photos, not a photoshopped image) that will allow the collector to understand the dimensions of the work and better imagine it work in his space;
    • Remember to add photos that can reassure the collector: for example zooming in on the signature, if there is information about the provenance on the work etc ...

The description of the work

Even if there are photos, it is important to add a written description of the work because it helps the collector understand the techniques used and the artist’s approach.

Information is key to bringing a collector into the world of an artist and an artwork. In fact, according to a survey conducted by Hiscox, 79% of online art buyers replied that they want more information about the artist and the artwork. In addition, 52% of responders noted that content was important for their choice of platform.

For each work, Artsper requires the galleries to fill in the basic information in a form (name of the work, name of the artist, dimensions, price, medium, technique etc) and therefore it isn’t necessary to repeat this information in the artwork description but instead add more detailed information.

Here are some things you could include in the artwork description:

  • Detailed information of the technique used
  • Some ideas on the meaning of the work
  • The context of its creation

Information about the artist

In addition to the photos and the description of the work, it’s important not to neglect the biography of the artist that allows the collector to understand the artwork within a broader context.


An artist’s biography should trace their background, explain the important influences on their work, point out what makes their work interesting or original. You can also summarise key exhibitions and mention if his works are part of important collections.


On Artsper, biographies are managed by our communications department to ensure that they are all optimised for search engines and will therefore appear higher up on Google's list of results. Send your artists’ biographies to

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