The art market is a fascinating, complicated sector that can bear witness to exchanges of gargantuan sums of money. This market is made possible due largely to millions of collectors and art buyers. It is important for artists and art agents to understand the different types of art buyers and their motivations so that they can tailor their approach or marketing strategy to each potential client. Artalistic has identified the five most common types of art buyers so that you can feel more at ease in the art market.

The leading types of art buyers & collectors

Are art collectors and investors simply interested in procuring art or are they influencers? In France, the Ministry of Culture and Communication conducted a study about art collectors a few years ago that found that art buyers and collectors are often men. 73% of them were elderly Parisian men with a degree in higher education. One collection out of five would include more than 200 pieces.

Trophy Hunters: Art as an item of prestige

These art buyers generally have colossal financial means that they are ready to invest as soon as they realize the rarity of a piece. They visit international auction houses regularly and are interested, more often than not, in procuring art as an investment rather than for its aesthetic appeal. Even if you are an artist whose pieces are worth millions, you might never come across an art collector of this caliber.

Those who love art for art’s sake

This type of art buyer is always looking for the most beautiful or unusual piece. They spend time analyzing the tiniest details and gain great satisfaction from purchasing a piece and knowing that they own something that they can enjoy contemplating over time. These collectors purchase art because they truly love art. The pieces they purchase speak to them, regardless of who created it, its dimensions or color palette.

Adventurous art buyers and collectors

Building an art collection can be a true adventure. Art buyers who fall into this category generally have a pronounced taste for risk taking and often act according to their instincts.

Spiritual people

This type of art buyer can be seen as a subcategory of collectors who love art for art’s sake. This category of buyers sees art as something that can take them on a spiritual quest. They see contemporary art as a privileged means of expression that allows the viewer to analyze the world through a different, multifaceted lens.

Discreet ones

Art buyers can also be very discreet, even if they are well versed in the art market and own several pieces. For example, they may belong to a very small, almost secretive circle of people. Sometimes museums solicit this type of art buyer to loan them paintings for exhibitions.

Are these types of art buyers also present online?

These various types of art buyers and collectors can also be found on online sites that specialize in selling and showcasing contemporary art.

In the past few years, this market has been experiencing fairly rapid growth, even if it has been fluctuating more as of late.

Recent figures

At the beginning of 2020, online sales accounted for approximately 10% of the art market.

The growth of this market has been exponential but has been more moderate over the last two years (4% in 2019). However the present situation with COVID-19 might increase online sales of art.

In 2019 sales in the online art market made up a total of $4.82 billion, a slight increase from $4.64 billion in 2018.

Art collectors and buyers are increasing their online purchases

Approximately 50% of art buyers and collectors have already purchased art online without being able to see the piece in person. This percentage is likely to increase in the near future as online purchasing in all sectors is becoming increasingly popular.

However the most recent Hiscox report notes that a majority of individuals are still reluctant to enter the digital world of art sales. Artalistic has put its stakes on the future of new communication technologies and the art world. Artalistic is made up of a team of experts who will guide you through all of your projects, whether you are an artist, dealer, investor, collector or an art lover. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.


We hope that you learned something new from this article about the different types of art buyers and collectors. Artalistic is a leading website specializing in online art sales. Feel free to browse our carefully curated collection of paintings, photography, sculptures, drawings and limited editions by well-established and emerging artists from around the world. Thank you, stay safe and see you soon for the latest news from the art world.