I was taking pictures of my gallery wall this past weekend and thinking about what makes art such a personal thing.

My gallery wall is made up of so many different things and some hold deeper meaning than others.  The lower left framed mixed media (you can see it says ‘Soul’ and ‘Laugh’) was a gift from a talented blogger friend and someone that supported me when my blog was still in it’s infancy.  The ‘Carpe’ and ‘Be Brave’ prints were from my time in Stockholm.

On top is a limited edition print which depicts a stylistic view of L’Alpe d’Huez… the most legendary of all Tour De France climbs, with twenty-one hairpin bends snaking their agonising way to the summit.  At each of its hairpin bends, a champion’s name who mastered the climb.  Wayne is a huge fan and this is his very favourite part of the race (he will actually book time off work just to watch it live!) so it’s personal to him.

There are a few photographs too – next to the L’Alpe d’Huez print is a photo of Wayne and I a few years ago in Reykjavik, Iceland.  We’d set the timer on our cheap digital camera and placed it on the ground, ran back to pose with the low sun in the background and the dried leaves in the foreground and it actually made quite an interesting shot which we both loved.  There’s another photo at the bottom when we decided spur-of-the-moment to drive to a completely empty beach in Wales.

Of course my own art is scattered throughout as well – something I was initially overly-critical of but I’ve learned to accept that it’s really a part of me and a part of how I choose to express myself creatively.

I’m trying to be more selective about what goes on my walls and I’m already keen to change a few out and replace them with pieces that really speak to me in some way or another.  And that’s what art really should do – it should speak to you in a way that others may not hear.

I don’t always know why certain pieces catch my eye, why they make my heart beat a little faster.  That same piece may do absolutely nothing to you and that’s okay.  It’s kind of like what attracts us to our partner – if others don’t fully understand it, does it really matter?

In the last couple of years, I’ve started to shy away from mass-produced art and look for pieces that are a little bit special.  I know we can’t all afford to fill our homes with original art as fabulous as that would be. But purchasing prints from emerging artists (and even those more established) is certainly a good way to capture whatever it is that makes a piece special to us.

Now, I love a good mooch around an art gallery.  I may stop for just a few moments on one but when a piece grabs me, it grabs me good and proper.  I am mesmerised by it, I’ll study it, I’ll wonder what it is about it that’s pulled me into it’s grasp.  Sometimes it’s the colours or the movement or the mood but often it’s not something that’s readily explained. The names the artist bestows upon their art intrigues me as well – in those instances, I try to find something deeper, wondering if it unravels the meaning or inspiration behind it.

If you can’t make it to a museum, then there are plenty of great sites out there to acquaint you with artists and their work.  Saatchi Online is a fantastic resource with over 300,000 pieces to choose from and you’re sure to find something that pulls you into its grip.

Here are a few in my last ‘armchair museum visit’ to Saatchi that I loved…

Benjamin Garcia – “Submariner”

Agnes Debowski – “ice tea in the park”

MaΕ‚gorzata Majerczyk-Sieczka – “passerby”
Dagrun Iris Sigmundsdottir – “Different Directions”

Joshua Bronaugh – “A Prayer for St Valentine”

Kelly Nicolaisen – “Take A Dip”

Yaheya Pasha – “Azure”

Jenia Maslova – “Rainbow Butterfly”

Kiana Mosley – “Joyful”

Many of these are available as prints and  you can filter your results as such.   I tend to like the paintings which you can see here but if you want photography, you can find that too or filter your results to just about any medium or subject that takes your fancy.  Like I said, art is so completely subjective so what I’ve loved, you may not – just don’t let that stop you from having a virtual visit.

Any favourites of the ones I’ve shown?  Maybe you’d like to tell me about your latest art purchase?  Maybe your working on your own personal gallery?  I’m all ears…

Don’t miss a thing!

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