Design styles aside, most people can agree that no room is complete without art. The good news? There are plenty of great paintings, prints and more to be found if you know where to look. While art sales once revolved mostly around high-end auctions and blue-chip gallery sales (many of which are shrouded in secrecy), the Internet age has introduced a plethora of online retailers looking to make this ever-growing market accessible to a wider range of buyers, including broke apartment dwellers. With so many options to choose from, AD has rounded up our top picks based on art preference and collection style. Read on to discover the best places to buy affordable art online and bring some excitement to your walls without draining your bank account.
Perfect for: The Photography Lover
Born out of a successful Berlin-based photography gallery, Lumas is now a network of over 40 galleries worldwide, with an impressive digital arm. Its website, like the galleries, specializes in high-quality, limited edition works by great photographers. Prints by such greats as Edward Steichen, Helmut Newton, and Horst P. Horst are offered in multiple framing options with prices starting at around $400.
Perfect for: The Eclectic
For those who like to exchange their art on a regular basis, Society6's wide array of whimsical, affordable prints are a great bet. Everything from cheeky sayings to watercolor flowers, nature scenes, and abstracts can be had for as little as $20, so your gallery wall is limitless.
Perfect for: Explorers
Founded in London in 2013 by a Swedish art enthusiast who worked in the New York art world, Artfinder is an online marketplace for original art from around the world. The site sorts its offerings by both style and medium, making it easy to browse over 200,000 works (including abstract paintings, sculpture, photography, collage, and digital art), all of which are signed by the artist. Prices start at $25, and the site also has dedicated services for interior designers buying art for their clients.
4 - SaatchiArt
Perfect for: Buddy Collector
SaatchiArt boasts an impressive collection of art at affordable prices. Original pieces, which include photography, collage, painting and sculpture, start at $200, with limited edition prints priced at $95. The site also runs a free art consulting service, where a team of curators will build a collection for you based on your taste or space.
5 Collectible Paper
Perfect for: Philanthropist
Copenhagen-based e-retailer Paper Collective sells artwork with a mission. The company works with artists, designers and illustrators to create prints, posters, cards and accessories that are certified organic with the Danish government's seal of approval. In addition, 10 percent of the proceeds from the sale of each piece go to a charity of the artist's choice. Now that's good art!
6 Minted .
Perfect for: Small Business Fan
Minted, largely known for its wide range of cards, takes a similar approach to its art offerings, using prints, photographs and drawings from independent artists around the world. Pieces range from $21 (unframed) to $605 (framed). Artists have their own landing pages with bios and links to all their work, and Minted's crowdsourcing model allows emerging artists to find a platform. This summer, the site will begin offering custom art.
7 - AHA .
Perfect for: Street art enthusiast
While AHA's offerings range from clothing to home accessories to cosmetics (all handmade by artisans around the world), its art department leans toward bright, fun and contemporary. AHA prints and supplies all the artwork it sells, so artists (who come from 45 countries) simply have to upload their artwork files, making it easy for emerging and experimental artists to earn commissions.
8 Tappan Collective
Perfect for: Early Fan
Tappan, founded in 2012 by Chelsea Neman and Jordan Klein, aims to nurture emerging artists by connecting them with experienced collectors. This support extends beyond the internet as well: Tappan curates many of her artists' exhibitions at various venues in Los Angeles. The website features everything from handmade ceramics for around $100 to large paintings for $10,000.