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Insuring Your Artwork

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Insuring your artwork for art and craft shows is important; to protect you from any liability associated to loss or damaged artwork.

Almost every event you participate in will stipulate in their guidelines that the event organisers are not responsible for any liability regarding loss from damaged or stolen artwork.


Therefore, it is the responsibility of the artist exhibiting their work, to insure their artwork against any liability. Many artists opt to simply keep their fingers crossed and hope it all goes without a hitch.

Although this is probably not the right approach, it is kind of understandable to a certain degree. Insurance can be expensive, particularly when it comes to art that is constantly being transported around from exhibit to exhibit.


Insuring Your Artwork Adequately

Some insurance companies may be quite vigilant when it comes to dealing with items that are not in one place for any given length of time. They may place this type of scenario in the "very high risk" policy category - with a policy fee to match.

However, that's not to say you will have trouble getting adequate insurance cover for your artwork. The best place to start is to pick up the telephone and ring around.

Contact a few local insurance agents (brokers) and enquire about getting some kind of commercial coverage for your artwork.

(For example, in the US there is an insurance policy called Inland Marine Insurance, which may be suitable for your requirements. Likewise in Australia, there is a policy called "transit insurance" that helps to cover people travelling with high priced or high valued items).

It is often better to get as much coverage as you can afford. Being covered for some of your work is better than not being covered at all.

Perhaps consider the amount of time and energy that has gone into producing your work. If you can justify it's worth in that regard, then chances are you can then justify it as a good reason to insure your work.

How Much Should You Be Insuring our Artwork For?

Coverage should be based on the actual retail value of your artwork. So if you have established a sale price of $500 for any given piece of work, then that is the amount of insurance cover you will require for that painting.

If you have ten pieces and each piece has a retail value of $500, then your insurance cover will be for $5000.

However, because art is somewhat of a speculative item in terms of retail value, you will need to have your insurance agent structure a policy to ensure that you are getting the best value in terms of insurance cover.

Also, it may be worth asking your insurance broker if your transit insurance policy can be extended to cover your work during the entirety of each exhibition and in the event that you need to ship a sold piece of artwork to the buyer.

Finally, make sure you clearly understand your policy agreement and what you are actually being covered for.

Don't be afraid to ask as many questions as you can, so there are no ugly surprises in the event that you may have to make a claim.

Insuring your artwork is kind of like buying some peace of mind. It's great to have, even though you may never need it. It can be most tragic if you need it and don't have it!

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