Own Art

Own Art has operated in Scotland since 2008 and makes a strong contribution to Scotland’s fragile visual arts infrastructure. The scheme supports galleries in both the public and private sector, helping to make contemporary visual art more accessible in Scotland.

Own Art is a national initiative that makes buying contemporary art and craft by living artists more affordable by allowing buyers to pay interest free over 10 months for purchases over £100.

Through Own Art membership galleries are able to offer interest free finance to their customers both online and in-store, helping customers to purchase the art and craft they love.

304 organisations across England, Scotland and Northern Ireland are now members of the scheme including commercial and not-for-profit galleries, museums, art fairs and artist-led organisations.

Own Art aims to reduce the financial barriers and perceptions of elitism that commonly exist within the art market, by making it easier and more accessible for people to purchase and enjoy original art and craft.

Own Art supports the market ecology which is vital to help artists reach their markets and helps them to develop a more sustainable practice.

Own Art is offered at 59 galleries and other art retailers, across Scotland. Several Creative Scotland Regularly Funded Organisations are members which includes 4 out of 5 of our Print Studio network.

The Own Art scheme is an important cultural economy initiative as it stimulates income for artists and galleries by encouraging increased sales of contemporary art and craft. Gallery members can offer subsidised credit facilities, and they benefit from marketing support and a range of other benefits that can help them to develop, grow and diversify their customer base.

We are pleased that sales for 2022/23 have exceeded the pre-Pandemic levels of 2019/20 with 634 transactions worth £728,638 in sales value.

How can I use Own Art?

There are hundreds of Own Art member galleries across the country to choose from, many of which specialise in different types of work. Use the Own Art gallery finder to search for the kind of work you are most interested in.

Using Own Art you can choose from paintings, prints, drawings, and sculpture to glassware, ceramics, jewellery, furniture, and textiles. Whatever you decide to buy, it must be made by a living artist as we want to support the artists of today by encouraging sales of their work to new buyers. In some galleries, you can use Own Art on works of art by artists born in the 20th or 21st century.

Own Art and the creative economy in Scotland

The Own Art scheme in Scotland helps contribute to the visual arts ecology and to the sustainability of 59 galleries across Scotland who directly employ 485 people. Including the wider halo effect of the support industries for example couriers, materials suppliers, based on the multiplier effect for Creative Industries from the DC Research Report of 2012 of 1.43, indirect impact could be said to contribute to a further 655 jobs across Scotland.

Sales through the Own Art scheme are recognised to be only a proportion of the gallery members overall sales but they still form a significant contribution to Scotland’s creative economy.

Based on the 634 transactions in 2022/23 it is estimated that over 500 artists have been helped to bring work to market through the existence of the scheme, therefore the scheme can be said to contribute directly to the ongoing welfare of over 955 people across Scotland.

How is Own Art supported?

The scheme is supported by Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Wales has its own scheme called Collector Plan.

The Own Art scheme is administered by Creative United, who manage the delivery of the scheme, and offer gallery training and support.  The loans are provided by, and guaranteed, by Novuna Capital Finance. Because the financial risk is taken on by Novuna, neither Creative Scotland nor the galleries bear any risk in relation to the loans.

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