We caught up with Pontus Silfverstolpe to get his advice on what to consider when buying art, plus his thoughts on this year's Stockholm fair!
Carl Wilhelm Hirsch
Thursday 2 September, 2021
Alongside being known for his skills as an antiques detective, Pontus Silfverstolpe has a wealth of experience in auction houses. Ahead of Affordable Art Fair Stockholm, 14 – 17 October, Nacka Strandsmässan, Fair Director, Carl Wilhelm Hirsch caught up with Pontus to find out about his art collecting tips and more…
Name: Pontus Silfverstolpe Family: Wife, three children, a dog and a bearded dragon Age: 47 years Profession: Founder of Barnebys, one of the worlds leading search sites for art, antiques, design and Collectibles.
After a years break, the joy of art and culture are back again, what have you particularly missed over the past 18 months?
Above all, I’ve missed large-scale exhibitions. Seeing art in an architectural space once more and experience it in person rather than on an instagram feed. I’ve also missed the opportunity to meet with people, gallery owners and artists in person.
You have previously been to Affordable Art Fair Stockholm and know the fair well, is there anything specific you are curious about in this year’s program?
I always find it very exciting to see the Recent Graduates show. I’ve bought several works of art from Recent Graduates over the years, and also regretted some I was not quick enough to buy!
Affordable Art Fair holds its 9th Stockholm Edition this year, what are some of the highlights you remember from past editions?
When Affordable Art Fair took over Stockholm for the first time, I knew it was something special. At the time, there were no art fairs for the general public that offered the breadth of Swedish and international art at a price point for ‘everyone’. It’s fantastic to see it flourish and that the fair has become an established and recurring feature of Sweden’s art and cultural calendar. It’s also been incredibly exciting to follow all the artists, some from their very first public debut to becoming established artists, with works in some of some of our top galleries.
For me personally, the conversations I have had on stage with several of the artists have been the most fun. Like the ones with Bella Rune, Sonja Larsson, Carlina Falkholt and mother and daughter artists Agneta and Carolina Gynning.
When shopping for art, what are your top tips for buyers?
There are two things to keep in mind when shopping art. No matter how cliché it sounds, you should always ‘buy art with your heart’. If you are going to live with the artwork, it should continue to inspire you over many years, and art will only do that if you buy what you love. Look at all the art collections in the world that have become museums or that have been sold successfully at auction. Historically, the thing that almost all of them had in common was that they came from a genuine collection, where the owner bought art with their heart. The second thing is that you almost always only regret what you do not buy!
Who are your favourite artists in this years roster and in general?
At the fair, it will be interesting to see Judy Mauer, Alex Voinea and Hans Withoo’s art in real life. Otherwise I love everything from Egon Schiele to Giotto and Jockum Nordström.
Thanks Pontus, we’ll be sure to keep an eye out for those artists and put your tips into practice at the fair. Don’t forget to buy your timed tickets to Affordable Art Fair Stockholm, 14 – 17 October, in advance to make sure you get the time slot to suit your calendar, and we’ll see you in the aisles.