ARTICLE: Collecting: Who to Buy Now

The five artists on this page weren’t included in our previous article.  But it’s time to take notice of their work.

Five years ago, we hadn’t even heard of some of the names you see here.  Some were still in college.  Some were just launching their careers.  And, while Bruce Weber had certainly cemented a lasting reputation for his commercial work as a fashion photographer, collectors hadn’t valued his images as they had his peers’ like Richard Avedon’s and Helmut Newton’s.  They still haven’t, which is why we include Weber on this list of five photographers to buy now.  We chose artists from different price ranges and different ages, such as Katy Grannan, whose fabricated documentary images explore issues of identity and emotional connection among young women.  Vik Muniz is another rising star who wasn’t included in out 1997 issue; his career got a boost with an exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.  Thomas Demand photographs cardboard models in a way that emphasizes light and shadow, raising issues about objectivity in photography; the Tate Modern in London has acquired some of his work, as has the Guggenheim in New York.  His prices are sure to climb.  And David Hillard is a native of New England whose work is relatively unknown in the United States outside of Boston.  He focuses on the personal:  His multi-paneled pictures are narratives of quiet moments.  They strike a balance between fiction and autobiography. As does much new contemporary photography.


1 Katy Grannan

Price range 2001: Around $3000

Why:  One of the “hot” young graduates of Yale’s photo program; her work, which explores issues of identity among young women, has been bought by the Guggenheim and other museums.

 2. Bruce Weber

Price range 2001: $1500 - $3500

Why: A Seminal photographer of fashion and one of the great influences on modern culture and photography, he’s never had the respect the deserves from collectors.  He’s way undervalued.

 3. Vik Muniz

Price Range 2001: $15000 - $30000

Why: A big name in the art world now, Muniz intrigues with images that are cleverly constructed illusions.

 4. Thomas Demand

Price Range 2001: Around $20000

Why: The sharks have already discovered Gursky and Thomas Struth, but their fellow German artist Demand is a relative unknown by comparison.

 5.David Hillard

 Price Range 2001:  Around $1500

Why: In the United States, he isn’t well known outside his native New England.  But he’s had shown in Europe, and he’s still very affordable.

from American Photo, May/June 2001