How We Choose Art For Our Second Home

 How We Choose Art For Our Second Home
 How We Choose Art For Our Second Home
 How We Choose Art For Our Second Home

Recently one of our long-time clients, Connie, had a wonderful chat with UGallery’s Marketing Director, Karina. Connie shares how she and her husband started collecting original art almost ten years ago. And after moving to their second home, she tells us how they select and decorate their modern San Francisco apartment with art. Read on to hear more, from how Connie and her husband discovered the joy of purchasing original art online to commissioning a bespoke piece.


UGallery: Hi Connie, thank you for talking with us today! You have been a long-time patron of UGallery and our artists. We’re so curious, when and how did you start collecting art?

Connie: My husband and I had always loved art but it was in the fall of 2014 when we first started collecting original art in earnest. We had been living for twenty-eight years in the home we purchased the year we got married. I mentioned a few times that we still had the same framed posters hanging that I had in my apartments before we got married and that it would be nice to have a change.

UGallery: Over the years, it seems you and your husband have acquired a lot of artwork. But how did you discover UGallery?

Connie: My husband began looking online for places to buy art, initially thinking more of local galleries, but quickly noticing UGallery and becoming intrigued. At that time, it seemed to us a little odd and maybe even risky to buy art online, but the website offered reassurances of returns without hassle if we didn’t like something we ordered. We decided to give it a try. After we got our first piece, we were hooked. It’s kind of like replacing a lampshade. Suddenly, many of our walls just had to have some new art and we acquired several more pieces quickly and then gradually ongoing ever since then. I would guess we have over fifty original pieces right now and we love each one.Top to Bottom: A Pinch of Salt by Faye Vander Veer, Late Dinner in Paris II by Jonelle Summerfield, and A New Day by Faye Vander Veer

UGallery: That sounds incredible. What do you consider when choosing art? What is your selection process like?

Connie: It’s almost 100% initial reaction. I often browse online listings when I’m not particularly in need of a piece of art but just because it’s interesting. It’s common for my husband and I independently to scroll through hundreds of images and not have anything grab either of our attention. When a single image arrests us, though, it’s likely that it will become part of our collection. Fortunately, 99% of the time, we have similar reactions to art. If we see a piece that generates a strong emotional response in both of us, then it’s a simple matter of thinking through dimensions and orientation to see if we have a place where it would be a fit. I do like to have a kind of flow within a given line of sight. I don’t like the transition from one piece of art to another close by to have a jarring effect.

UGallery: We couldn’t agree more, and it’s quite a fun and wonderful process from choosing pieces to hanging them in your home. At this point, you have quite an ample and diverse UGallery collection, I'm sure it's difficult to choose favorites. But which ones touch you the most and why?

Connie: That is almost impossible to answer! Any one of them could be my favorite at a particular moment based on how I’m feeling. I won’t deny you an answer though. Late Night Coffee Shop by Robert Holewinski is a piece that captivates me several times a day even though I’ve had it for years. It simply captures the image of an older man sitting at a coffee shop and sipping his cup of coffee. It’s probably in part because I enjoy my first cup of coffee every day so much, but I can almost feel the satisfaction he is experiencing as he gazes into the cup and contemplates taking a sip. It’s not just me either. It’s rare that we have guests who don’t comment on that painting!Late Night Coffee Shop by Robert Holewinski

UGallery: Yes, it’s easy to see that! A reminder to savor quiet, simple, and special moments. We want to ask you about your experience when you commissioned a piece by Nava Lundy - will you tell us how it came about?

Connie: I had seen a piece of Nava’s that I loved but it just wasn’t quite the right dimensions for the space I had in mind. I kept thinking it would be perfect if it were 3 by 3 feet. I thought it was a long shot but inquired whether the artist would be willing to recreate it in that size and was thrilled to learn that she was happy to accommodate. Not only that but she asked if there were any elements or colors of the painting that we’d like to have changed in our custom version. It was all done beautifully and hanging in my home within a matter of a few weeks.Rouge 2 - A Commissioned Painting by Nava LundyUGallery: We’re glad you are quite happy with it. What does it mean to you to support artists?

Connie: It makes me feel good thinking that artists know that their creations are bringing joy into my home and being shared with my guests. It’s also nice to know that, in a small way, my purchases help artists continue to do the work that is their passion.

UGallery: That is such a beautiful thought, supporting artists means supporting their talent, time, and passion. And an art-filled home is indeed a wonderful place to be in. What is your home like, and what does having art in it make you feel?

Connie: I work at home so I’m there a lot and need to have areas for work, for entertaining, and for self-care. We moved to a high-rise apartment in 2019, gutted it to make it more modern and openly flowing and we had all the walls painted white. That has become the canvas for many, many art pieces that are very colorful. When I walk in the door, I feel like the whole place just gives me a hug and welcomes me home. When guests walk in the door, the first comment is something like “Wow, look at all this art” and “The colors are so beautiful”. Moving through the apartment, the art and colors evoke a variety of responses ranging from high energy to calm connection to peaceful inward reflection.Repose by Michele Giulvezan-TannerUGallery: It sounds like you have decorated your home quite beautifully, and to your personal style. And our last question, Connie - why is UGallery special to you?

Connie: It’s special to us because it’s where we acquired our first really nice piece of art and has been the source of almost all of the pieces we’ve collected since then. More importantly, because we were fascinated by the concept of buying art online, we became acquainted with the founder and his partner and eventually became close friends. We learned more about how the business got its start; the integrity with which it operates and how they curate the artwork. We’re grateful to have both the art and the folks at UGallery in our lives.

UGallery: Thank you very much, Connie, for sharing with us your colorful and exciting art experience, and for opening your doors to us.