Walls CAN speak

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Thomson, Karen

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University of Guelph


This thesis is an investigation of the determinants of fine art preference and selection. For over 2,000 years, art has been ranked among the world's most valuable objects. Its power extends to cultural definition of entire societies. The objective of this research was to test the existence of four unique consumer segments, defined by cultural taste, entitled Decorator, Investor, Collector and Creator. Hypotheses that Collectors have the knowledge to distinguish original from reproduced art, versus Decorators who do not, were supported. The Creator and Collector prefer innovative art and an abstract style is the driving determinant of selection. The reputation of an artist is the least important determinant of art selection but slightly more important to Investors. The methodological approach of Discrete Choice delivered strong results that contradict conclusions of previous studies and provide a foundation for a new theory on the important role of cultural status with significant implications to industry.



determinants, fine art, preference, selection, cultural taste, decorator, investor, collector, creator