The Market: Shop Local

Ray Phillips

The Market: Shop Local

Ash Almonte

Cody Hooper

Hayley Mitchell

Gil Bruvel

Known for its local haunts, enviable food scene and of course the musically inclined, Austin is home to the ultimate ‘local’ culture. With residents quick to claim their status and outsiders eager to visit, are we even surprised that new transplants continue to arrive every day?

Check out our top local artists from in and around the Texas capital. Support Austin artists and shop local.

| Ash Almonte |

Ash Almonte’s work makes reference to the energizing movement found within abstract expressionism. “It is more about the execution, than the final product. I enjoy the process of making art more than the product” says Ash. 

| Cody Hooper | 

Cody Hooper covers panels with oil and acrylic, experimenting in composition and texture. He entices the viewer to explore an unknown. Hooper is deeply interested in the effects of color, texture and the emotional response to strong composition and design. By removing the representational, he tells stories without subject matter solely through abstracted juxtapositions.

| Hayley Mitchell | 

Hayley Mitchell is known for her vibrant, abstracted figures – inspired by Cubism and Post-Impressionism. Captivated by intricate design found throughout international cultures, Mitchell creates bold pieces that make a statement in any home. She paints daily in her home studio located in the Texas capital.⠀

| Gil Bruvel | 

Australian-born/ France-raised/ Texas-based artist Gil Bruvel’s interdisciplinary body of work draws from Surrealism’s fantastical feel and imagined dreamscapes. His art emerges from a deep contemplation of images, emotions, and sensations, which he refines continually before he casts them into material form.

| Katherine Houston | 

A native Houstonian, Katherine Houston has spent the majority of her life in the Houston area. She began her career as an investment broker in the late ’70s, leaving in the late ’80s to begin a family. Katherine has devoted much of the past 20 years to studying and producing art. 

| Brad Ellis | 

Brad Ellis, an abstract painter living and working in Dallas, Texas, creates mixed media paintings that involve encaustic, oil, acrylic and collage elements. Texture, surface treatments and color are very important aspects of his work in order for each painting to have a profound and compelling presence.

| Maxine Price | 

Maxine Price received her BFA degree in Art from the University of Texas at Austin and over her career has pursued various aspects of art including being a book designer, a fashion illustrator, an interior designer, a graphic artist, a portrait artist and a painter showing in numerous galleries and juried shows in the Southwestern United States.

| Ray Phillips | 

Artist, Ray Phillips has always held a passion for creating art. Ray’s work has evolved into an amalgam of typography, abstract composition, collage/ mixed media and hidden secrets. Ray’s work is as much an intellectual pursuit as creative endeavor, as evident when he speaks about his work. “Enough is never enough. Each piece is like a series of small battles – something to overcome in anongoing effort to please myself. The creative process is sometimes very exhausting, unlike the interpretation some have that it’s always therapeutic with ideas just flying onto the canvas”.

shop local now. request an appointment by emailing or calling/texting 512.478.4440.

Katherine Houston

Maxine Price

Brad Ellis

July 27th, 2020|

The Prints Market: Top Reasons to Collect Editions

The Prints Market: Top Reasons to Collect Editions

Would you rather buy an original print or an original painting? Without hesitation most people would answer with the latter but read on to understand why prints are highly collectible, original works desirable in their own right.

Misconception: Prints are copies of a unique work.

Reason 1 | Prints are distinct works and an important part of an artist’s oeuvre.

Whether making screenprints, lithographs, woodcuts or etchings, artists are drawn to the medium of printmaking for a variety of reasons. Prints afford the unique opportunity for experimentation and collaboration while also offering exciting new ways to break artmaking down to its building blocks.

Misconception: Prints, and works on paper, do not last as long as paintings or sculpture.

Reason 2 | Prints offer long-term value with proper framing and care.

Prints do require some preventative measures to keep them in good condition such as UV-filtered glass and archival mounting materials. This is easily handled in the framing process and requires very little consideration afterwards. Keep the piece in a stable environment and it will remain in excellent condition.

Misconception: A great collection consists of paintings and sculpture.

Reason 3 | Prints provide an accessible entry point to build a comprehensive collection.

Prints are usually smaller in physical size and typically less expensive than paintings or sculpture by the same artist. If a collector is seeking a specific movement, or notable name, for their collection, prints increase the range of possibilities. First-time buyers may look to prints as an attainable option for obtaining an original work. Like other media, value is determined by rarity, technique, complexity and composition.

Misconception: Lower numbers within an edition are better than higher ones.

Reason 4 | Prints are highly collectible whether it’s the first of the edition or the last.

While edition size affects value, the specific number within the series does not. Lower does not equal better. This outdated idea, stemming from historical printmaking techniques, might have been true in the past when soft metals such as copper caused diminished imagery during the printing process but in today’s Contemporary Prints market it is not a factor. Additionally some editions are not even numbered in the order they were made, further proof of the point.

Misconception: A print without a number or signature has no value.

Reason 5 | Prints make Blue Chip art attainable at a variety of price points.

Even at the age of 92 Alex Katz signs all of his prints that are published by Lococo Fine Art, other artists are not as diligent. Even without a signature, or a specific number from within the edition, prints can fetch high prices or offer collectors a chance to purchase from top names. Available now at Russell are a variety of unsigned, unnumbered Andy Warhol silkscreens that include both the publisher’s and printer’s stamps. A signed Warhol screenprint at auction would realize over 100K.

shop prints now. request an appointment by emailing or calling 512.478.4440.

July 12th, 2020|

The Edit: How to Hang ~ a Step-by-Step guide ~

The Edit:
How to Hang ~ a Step-by-Step guide ~

The where has been picked and the what has been chosen, all that remains is the how. Installing art may seem best left to the professionals, but our easy to follow how-to provides a step-by-step guide to hanging your latest purchase. On most walls, and in most museums, artwork is hung at eye-level – a vague and arbitrary statement when considering we all differ in height. Translated to a measurable unit, the midpoint of your piece should be around 58 inches. Use our guide below for hanging best practice whether the work is displayed with a wire hanger. All you need is a measuring tape, pencil, hammer, and 1-2 nails.

A vibrant blue Alberto Murillo installed last week in a client’s home on a curved wall.

Hunt Slonem (b. 1951), Cobalt, 2017, 30 x 40 inches, Oil and Acrylic with Diamond Dust on Canvas. Price on request. Primary Market.

Wire Hanger:

Quite literally a wire used to hang. A single wire is attached to both sides of the back of the piece, hung from one nail in the wall.

  1. Measure the distance between the wire at full tension (B) and the top of the frame (A). See image above.
  2. Measure the height of your frame (C) and divide the result in half.
  3. From the floor, measure up the wall to 58″ (average eye-level) and make a pencil mark.
  4. From the mark, measure upward the distance recorded in step 2 and make a second light pencil mark (E).
  5. From this mark, measure downward the distance recorded in step 1 (D).
  6. Place nail and hanger here. Make sure that the bottom of your hanger is resting on the line when you hammer your nail in, rather than the nail point. This is where your wire will rest (on the crook of the hanger).
  7. Rest easy and enjoy your piece.
  8. Still stumped or hanging in a tricky spot? We do installation too – schedule our Logistics Manager Ignacio for a home visit by contacting us at (512) 478-4440.

June 30th, 2020|

The Market: Primary vs Secondary Art Markets Explained

The Market:
Primary vs Secondary Art Markets Explained

Investing in art means spotting a good deal. Do you know enough to recognize great value and anticipate future returns? Diversify your collection with works from both the primary and secondary art market.

Common questions I’m asked: What is the secondary art market? How is it different from the primary? What do you even mean by primary and secondary? While the international art market is incredibly complex in scope, scale, and changing patterns, the difference between these two categories is easily explained. Let’s talk basics – artwork available for sale comprises the global art market. Whether a piece is found in person at Russell Collection, posted online through a third party site like Artsy, or offered at Christie’s for auction, it is categorized as either a primary market or secondary market work.

Robert Indiana (b. 1928), 3 Untitled, 2018, 48 x 36 inches, Acrylic on Canvas. Priced at $6,900. Primary market.

The Secondary Market

Secondary market works have been sold previously and are now offered at auction or sold again through a gallery. These pieces can come from an established artist with a strong market, providing collectors insight into how their investment will perform. Here at Russell our collection extends into the secondary market with works available from Pop artist Robert Indiana (high auction record: $4m, 2011) to Brooklyn-based graffiti artist KAWS (high auction record: $14.9m, 2019).

Collection Diversification

Having primary and secondary works in your portfolio offers the advantages of both markets – the possibility of high gains with the security of a guaranteed return. Shop our inventory in-person or browse our online artists shop to source your next investment.

Robert Indiana (b. 1928), HEAL (positive variation), 2014, sheet: 32 x 32 inches, Silkscreen on 2ply Rising Museum Board, Editions: 4 and 25 /25. Priced at $15,000. Artist’s secondary market high auction record: $4m in 2011.

The Primary Market

Primary market works are being sold for the first time and reach collectors in a variety of ways – direct from the artist’s studio, through gallery representation, or at a contemporary art fair like Art Basel or Frieze. The primary market is an excellent option for savvy collectors seeking to buy a piece by the next Pollock or Basquiat. At Russell Collection we represent emerging and mid-career artists like Hayley Mitchell and Hunt Slonem, affording collectors the opportunity to buy never before seen pieces with the potential for high resale in the future.

KAWS (b. 1974), MOCAD, 2019, sheet: 8 x 10 inches, Acrylic on Wove Paper. Priced at $7,000. Artist’s secondary market high auction record: $14.9m in 2019.

June 30th, 2020|

The Edit: Fridge to Frame

The Edit: Fridge to Frame

How many pint-sized Picassos or kid Kusamas live in your home? Whether age three, thirteen or thirty, your child’s latest creative experiment may be the inventive pop of color your walls need. When looking at abstract gestural contemporary art, it’s common for a specific thought to arise – my kid could have done that. Well in this one instance, that would be right. Bring contemporary art straight to your home at a great value that’s full of context and sentiment. Read on for the three framing categories to consider when choosing how to display your little Lichtenstein’s masterpiece:

Alberto Murillo, Inner Beauty, 2015  40 x 40 inches. Available for $9,500.

Works on Paper:
Consider over matting or using a float mount to create a stand out border. With glass and a minimal frame, the end result will be a piece that could easily pass for a David Shrigley.

On Canvas:
Whether stretched or rolled, custom frame options will address whatever display support is needed. A simple float frame allows your tike’s paintings to stand out with a polished finish.

Shadow Boxes are the perfect solution for any three-dimensional works. While typically used for framing jerseys, consider using them to frame a favorite craft or collection.

Why limit their scribbles and class projects to the fridge? Frame their work and bring it to the forefront. And who knows, they really might just grow up to be the next Louise Bourgeois.

June 23rd, 2020|

The Market: Banksy to Brainwash

The Market: Banksy to Brainwash

Like many in contemporary art Banksy and Mr. Brainwash utilize found imagery, appropriating recognizable images and manipulating them through context and juxtaposition. Borrowing and layering motifs from other artists has become a cornerstone of Mr. Brainwash’s oeuvre, allowing the viewer to engage in a game of eye spy. His eye-catching works are quite open in their frank allusions and irreverent appropriations. Banksy, however, has garnered international acclaim for his distinctive style of satirical street art and graffiti. His work is rich in dark humour and frequently captioned with subversive epigrams that provide poignant and potent commentaries on the social and political aspects of contemporary society.

Instantly gettable, Banksy’s Girl with Balloon is a perfect encapsulation of human emotion for the short-attention span of our social media age. The small girl reaching after her lost balloon is the poster-child of Banksy’s art coming originally from a graffiti mural first painted in London in 2002. Mr. Brainwash’s use of the image, in one of his wildly colorful and referential pieces, comes as no surprise. The LA based artist worked with Banksy to create the Exit Through the Gift Shop, a polarizing film that sparked many tantalizing theories about the mysterious British street artist.

Mr. Brainwash, Balloon Girl, 2020, 60 x 48 inches, Silkscreen, Mixed Media and Cement on Paper. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art, price upon request.

Banksy, Flag (Silver), 2006, framed: 25.5 x 35.5 inches, Silkscreen on silver Chromolux, Numbered edition out of 1000. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art, price upon request.

Balloon Girl by Mr. Brainwash features the Winged Angel of Keith Haring, the explosive comic book KAPOW1 of Lichtenstein, and the Warholian soup cans turned into vegetable-flavored aerosol sprays. The work takes full use of its compositional space, giving the viewer a look into the saturated, multi-layered, witty, and unique world of Mr. Brainwash. Another motif common to both artist’s is Basquiat’s tri-point crown. In Banksquiat Banksy repeats the image seven times, producing the outer ring of a ferris wheel. By combining his moniker with Basquiat, the anonymous artist calls upon the viewer to associate him with the late great Neo-Expressionist.

Through appropriation and prankster antics, Banksy has continued to shake up the world of Contemporary Art. A common name in the top auction houses, the artist’s record high sits at over $12,000,000 for a work on canvas. Newer to the scene, Mr. Brainwash’s works are already fetching over $50,000 on the secondary market. Prolific and expert markets, the two artists are definite fixtures in both Street Art and Contemporary Art history.

Banksy, Banksquiat, 2020, framed: 38 x 36 inches, Screenprint, Edition: 132/300. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art, price upon request.

June 23rd, 2020|

The Market: Warhol’s Silkscreen Portfolios

The Market: Warhol’s Silkscreen Portfolios

     Andy Warhol is arguably the most influential 20th century artist, with secondary market records for his paintings at over $105 million BP. While his works on canvas are mainstays at Christie’s, Sotheby’s and Phillips, it is Warhol’s prints, or silkscreens, that showcase his iconic style and images. As an artist, Warhol, favored the technique as it allowed for mass-production and limitless manipulation. In 1967, Andy Warhol established Factory Additions, a print-publishing company that doubled as his studio. Beginning with Marilyn Monroe, Warhol produced successive screen print portfolios drawing influence from celebrity, consumerist culture, and art history. Notable series include the Ad Portfolio, depicting major brands from Chanel to Apple, and the Myth Portfolio, pulling characters from Dracula and Wizard of Oz to Uncle Sam and Superman.

Andy Warhol (b.1928), Marilyn Green, framed: 42 x 42 inches, Silkscreen printed in colors, Unsigned and Unnumbered with Publisher’s Stamp. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art for $6,500.

     For the Marilyn Monroe Portfolio, each image was printed from five screens: one that carried the photographic image and four for different areas of color, sometimes printed off-register. About repetitions Warhol said, “The more you look at the same exact thing, the more the meaning goes away, and the better and emptier you feel.” For Warhol mass-reproduction was intrinsic to his art, it questioned the value of the ‘original’ as each screen print was unique in its context and coloring.

     Undeniably Warhol has had a persistent impact on culture, society and of course the visual arts. Since his death in 1987 his market has held – strong and consistent – even as interest in other Pop icons like Tom Wesselmann and James Rosenquist has ebbed and flowed. Born Andrew Warhola, the artist’s mononymous moniker ‘Warhol’ is synonymous with Pop art – a movement that emerged out of the US and UK in the late 50’s. Secondary market sales and recent auctions have seen complete portfolios of signed prints realize upwards of $750,000 USD at auction with single signed Silkscreens reaching over $200,000 USD.

Andy Warhol (b.1928), American Eagle, 1983, framed: 42 x 42 inches, Silkscreen with glitter on Lenox museum board, Printer’s Proof. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art for $5,500.

     Opening on June 20th from 6-8pm, Life is Beautiful: Andy Warhol & Mr. Brainwash, includes a collection of Warhol unsigned Silkscreen prints that is uniquely diverse in its representation of 7 different Portfolios. Each work was printed by Rupert Jasen Smith, New York – the official printer listed in Andy Warhol Prints: Catalogue Raisonne 1962-1987. In addition to those pictured here, works include Chanel No. 5, Superman, Geronimo, Bald Eagle, The Star and more… Both a statement and investment piece, these works are priced at an amazing value and would make a notable addition for either a discerning collector or a first-time art buyer.

Andy Warhol (b.1928), The Star (Greta Garbo), 1981, framed: 42 x 42 inches, Silkscreen with diamond dust, Unsigned and Unnumbered. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art for $7,950.

June 15th, 2020|

The Edit: Zoom Backdrop

The Edit: Zoom Backdrop

While instagram offers a curated peek into our day-to-day lives, zoom showcases – for better or worse – the walls we live with everyday. The cluttered bookshelf and college-era poster may have faded into the background pre-#stayhome but now it’s highlighted in the weekly team wrap-up, displayed back-and-center. Natural, front-facing lighting and a camera tilted down are great tips to look your best, but what about the largest area within your video – the backdrop?

Right: Alex Katz, Summer Flowers, 2018, 42 x 111 inches, Enamel-based silkscreen inks printed on gessoed canvas, Edition: 5/35. Contact Russell Collection Fine Art for price.

Here’s what to consider when curating your Zoom background:

  1. Space – Solid Wall or Static Scene
    Frequent business travel might mean your ‘home office’ is the kitchen counter or dining table – workable for independent tasks but when you hop on a video call make sure to set-up your laptop with a solid wall, or static scene, behind you. Less distraction for your coworkers and no worries about the dog, kids, or partner making an unexpected appearance.
    Left: Alberto Murillo, Wildlife, 2018, Mixed Media on Panel, 48 x 48 inches; Center: David Davis, Somewhere Else, 2018, Brass, sterling silver, and paduak wood, 27 x 18 inches; Right: Fiona Rae, Bewitched, 2001, Screenprint in colors with glitter on wove paper, 33 x 27.5 inches, Artist’s Proof. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art for $11,000, $5,000 and $1,895 respectively.
  2. Content – Art, Books, and Beautiful Things
    Think about what you’re showing off. In a work environment an ironed button down, steamed silk midi, or spotless three-quarter zip speaks to how much you value your job and your colleague’s time. Although you may be wearing sweats instead of slacks, use your backdrop to convey a certain workplace seriousness that’s been lost between shuffles to the kitchen. Add the piece you just discovered through Artsy or showcase that rare find from 1stdibs.
  3. Placement – Assess Composition
    Whether it’s a painting, framed poster or work on paper the general rule suggests hanging at eye-level. Technically speaking – the height of a piece’s midpoint should be leveled with other works at around 60 inches high. For zoom, instead think about the composition of your call. Place items behind you with the whole picture in mind – consider temporarily hanging works lower to create interest points or display your favorite art.
    Left: Blek le Rat, Resist Against the Imposters, 2006, Spray Paint and Acrylic on Canvas, 24 x 19.5 inches, Edition: Unnumbered/85; Right: Rimi Yang, Ceramic Beauty, 2018, Oil on Wood Panel, 12 x 12 inches. Available at Russell Collection Fine Art for $16,000 and $2,000 respectively.

June 3rd, 2020|

The Market: YBAs

The Market: YBAs (Young British Artists)

Coined in 1992 in Artforum, ‘Young British Artists’ (YBAs) labels a group of art-making London denizens including Damian Hirst, Fiona Rae, and Tracey Emin. Loosely formed in the late eighties the YBAs collectively began exhibiting in 1988 with the exhibition Freeze organized by Damien Hirst. Today Hirst is a world renowned, blue chip art star with an auction record high of $19.2M. At the time he was still attending Goldsmiths, University of London like most of the first-wave of YBAs.

Their subsequent rise was primed by a convergence of the school’s innovative teaching style, which rejected the strict separation of courses by medium, and the UK capital’s cultural lag behind vibrant, contemporary art focused cities like New York and Berlin. Lacking an energetic arts scene, the YBAs (Young British Artists) looked for ways to market themselves and showcase their work independently from the typical gallery and museum environments.

With no single unified style, the Young British Artists’ interdisciplinary approach draws from two major post-war movements: Conceptualism’s assertion that the concept is paramount and Minimalism’s idea that art should not be imitation or representation but it’s own separate entity entirely. YBAs openness to atypical materials and processes, as well as their art’s final form, led to breakthrough works like Rachel Whiteread’s concrete moulded House (1993), Tracey Emin’s intimate installation My Bed (1998), and Damien Hirst’s infamous formaldehyde shark The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1991).

Damien Hirst, To Lose (Red Butterfly), 2008, 11.8 x 9.7 inches, Photogravure and aquatint printed in colours, Artist’s Proof. Available framed at Russell Collection Fine Art for $7,900.

The market for YBAs work was strong from the outset with notable collector-gallerist Charles Saatchi a key factor in their success. He promoted British art by amassing works by the crucial members of the Young British Artists as well as lesser known peripheral artists. Staging the YBAs exhibition Sensation at London’s Saatchi Gallery in 1997, he showcased his vast collection of 1st generation YBAs, like Fiona Rae, as well the second wave of Young British Artists – students of the Royal Academy of Art which included Tracey Emin.

As the YBAs reputation disperses and their market continues to grow, the strong desire for works by Hirst, Emin, and Rae remain a vital part of the broader international contemporary art market. Recently acquired and available for viewing, unique and editioned works by these critical artists are exhibited at Russell Collection Fine Art.

Tracey Emin, I Promise to Love You, 2014, 28 x 20 inches, Poster on 250 gsm silk finish paper, Edition: Unnumbered of 500. Available framed at Russell Collection Fine Art for $1,600.

Fiona Rae, Bewitched, 2001, 33 x 27.5 inches, Screenprint in colors with glitter on wove paper, Artist’s Proof. Available framed at Russell Collection Fine Art for $1,895.

June 3rd, 2020|

Art Soothes the Soul, Art is Powerful!

Art Soothes the Soul, Art is Powerful!

Even more so now, it has become evident to me that Art soothes the soul. As I walk around my house I find myself looking at the art I have collected over the years and reflecting about the experience, emotional and visible, of the day I decided to purchase the art. What did I see in the painting that day? How did it make me feel? What was the experience like at the gallery? Do I feel the same about the art today that I felt that day?

Art bring happiness in to our home, because no matter what I am able to stare at a piece of artwork, ponder my day, experience my emotions. The way I feel about a specific piece changes for me depending on what is going on in my life. It may make me laugh or smile, feel angst or cry. Art is meant to create an emotional response whether good or bad. I marvel at the fact that after running through my thoughts of the day I always end up being comforted by the beauty in what artists create, the talent they possess, the emotion they are able to express and evoke in me. Art can soothe the soul.

In these times of uncertainty and stay at home orders we no longer have the luxury of walking into a gallery, a place to have a visceral experience with a piece of art, a chance for a one on one with a piece. The world had changed overnight and everyone is trying to figure out how to navigate the world of social distancing. Don’t distance yourself from art. Art is powerful!!

– Lisa Russell

March 30th, 2020|

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