In the Press: The Art Salad

Barbara Koz Paley

Barbara Koz Paley is the Founder and CEO of Art Assets, an art consulting firm in New York City.

AS: Tell us about your background. Do you remember your first interaction with art?

BP: My first interaction was at the dinner table with my parents. My mother loved to decorate and kept our home full of beautiful and unique pieces. When I was little, I would go around the house and negotiate to have certain items in my room. I had a very developed taste, even for such a young age. I wanted everything to be very simple, elegant, and minimal. This was my first experience in collecting and curating because I would only select pieces that I had a strong affinity for.

AS: What was your first art purchase? What’s your dream piece?

BP: The first thing I ever paid for was when I was in high school. I went to an art fair with some friends and bought a painting of a Moorish man with a dark background. This was a revelation – I could make money from little jobs, like babysitting, and I could spend it on art! It wasn’t just the act buying of art that I enjoyed; it was the personal acknowledgment that I had my own opportunity to buy it. It was, and still is, very empowering.

I don’t have a dream piece.

AS: What does your collection say about you? What pieces do you tend to gravitate towards?

BP: My collection says I have a very eclectic eye and I’m able to combine wildly different art, sculpture, objects, and patterns in a way that is very welcoming.

AS: How has your collection changed over the years?

BP: It’s gotten bigger. Each new discovery and collection reflects how I want to live. Art provides the means to display this.

My theory is that you live with what you collect and it reflects who you are to yourself and others. I don’t like for my art to live in storage, so if I have too many things, I de-acquisition. For instance, I’ve given a lot of furniture to the Brooklyn Museum.

AS: Were there any works that were hard to part with? Do you have a favorite piece right now?

BP: There were times when I had to sell things, but once it’s gone [a piece of art], it’s gone. I’m not much for mourning.

My grandmother always told me that I was a collector for the moment… with beautiful objects, you don’t own them, you just care for them and sometimes you have to let them go. It’s not that I don’t get attached to my things, but life doesn’t revolve around what you own, it revolves around what’s inside of you.

AS: What drives your passion for collecting?

BP: Making environments! I use art to transform and reshape the experience of each room and place. I want guests to feel welcome in my home and experience who I am as a collector.

AS: If you weren’t collecting art, what would you be doing? Do you have any hobbies that fulfill you as much as collecting?

BP: I would still be collecting; I’m always collecting. I’m always creating environments.

AS: What is your advice to new collectors? Any mistakes you wish you could have avoided?

BP: Buy what you love and buy within your price range. Get to know the artist, if you can, and buy several pieces from them to get a real sense of their work.

“Regarding mistakes… Oh, you make mistakes all the times – so what! Nothing to fuss about. Life is filled with mistakes!

Read the full article on the Art Salad website.

About Us
Art Assets, founded in 1992, is a national art advisory firm with clients ranging from entrepreneurial firms to international companies. Our expertise lies in using art and culture to transform, brand and reposition properties and in integrating innovative arts programming into alternative spaces.

Last Tweets