Art and millennials in a social media world

July 22, 2016
Millennials are expanding the art world quickly and there is a range of reasons for their increasing interest in culture. 
Some millennials are motivated by the feeling of importance that comes from having an art collection while others consider it to be a good investment. “Flipping”, the buying and selling of art to turn a quick profit, is popular in this generation. Social media allows them to access a wide variety of artists, galleries and events very quickly. It also equalizes a formerly elite aspect of culture, allowing anyone to view and share the art they like through Instagram or Pinterest.
Galleries, artists, and the art community as a whole have to adapt to keep up with this fast-paced generation. Some of the key changes that the art community has addressed include: 
A more proactive audience – Millennials are much more likely to do their own research by connecting with the “right” people, both through social media and in-person networking. 
Different interests – Older collectors often value traditional styles and appreciate the history behind a piece or a movement, while most millennials are more likely to take risks on more contemporary styles and unique materials. 
Different buying practices - Some millennials use art as a way to make general money while others use it as a ladder to afford purchasing more expensive pieces. They have also increased the practice of online purchasing, even though purchasing in person is still very common. 
Getting millennials involved – Several art institutions have developed “young collectors councils” that allow millennials to gain access to the art world and provide cultural education. They find out about events through blogs or crowdsourced reviews. 
Cindy Zalm, our General Manager in the Netherlands, commented: “It’s no wonder art fairs have become more popular over the last few years. They’re not only a great opportunity to get an overview of what’s hot and see lots of art works in just one day, but they also provide a good opportunity for networking with this new market of buyers.”
Contact an expert