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Decorating your Home with Artwork in a Socially Responsible Way

Most of us can’t afford to splash out on a Picasso or De Kooning for our home, but we still want to have some nice pieces of art to liven up the walls. It is common to buy a print or two from a local store and then frame it, but mass-produced artwork is typically printed in factories and shipped overseas, which is not great for the environment. When you hang a mass-produced print or reproduction painting on the wall, only big business benefits. So, what are your options if you want to buy art in a more socially responsible way?

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Buy from Local Artists

In any community, there will always be creative types that produce artwork. Some of them rely on the money they make from selling their artwork, so by purchasing one of their pieces, you are making a real difference to that person’s life.

Look out for art shows in the local community and go along. If you see a piece of artwork you like, ask the artist if it is for sale. They will be thrilled to make a sale and you get to enjoy a piece of original artwork in your home.

Student art shows are another good place to pick up affordable artwork. Most final year students studying art at college exhibit their work in a show. The work is usually for sale at a reasonable price. It is a great opportunity to buy a piece of art from an up-and-coming artist. You never know, this impoverished student could become the next Damian Hurst!

Buy Art Souvenirs on Your Travels

Do you travel a lot? If so, you probably enjoy buying souvenirs to remind you of your experiences. We all like to pick up mementos when we visit a new place, but rather than wasting money on cheap junk that was probably mass-produced in a factory in China, why not invest in a piece of art instead?

Art is an important industry in many developing countries. In Africa, talented locals carve wonderful sculptures from local wood, and in Australia, the indigenous Aborigines produce amazing ‘dot’ paintings. Instead of buying a silly t-shirt, invest in a painting or sculpture instead. If you pick up a small piece of art and have it well-wrapped, it can travel home in your suitcase for free.

Buy Charity Artwork

There are some amazing non-profits that work with artists in impoverished parts of the world. You can purchase an original painting and in return, your cash helps to support an artist and their family, as well as raise awareness for them and their community. This Banksy stained glass painting is a great example of this type of project. The picture has been produced by a talented artist and would look fabulous on your living room wall.

Produce Your Own Sustainable Artwork

Get creative and work with driftwood, discard materials, and leftover paint. It is amazing what you can do if you have a vision for the kind of piece you want hanging on your wall!

Got any more great ideas? Let us know in the comments!


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