Selling Art? How to Identify the Artist, Artwork Age and Value

Are you preparing to sell some of your artwork, but aren’t certain its value or its age? There are a few different things you need to look at to determine painting worth, and that includes who painted the piece and when they did it. Here are a few ways you can determine who the artist is and other information about the piece.

Selling Art

Look for a Signature on the Front and Back

The easiest way to identify the artist is, of course, to look for their signature. Usually, the signature is on the front, but some artists may have signed the back of the canvas or put other information there. Don’t go off any information found on the frame unless you’re absolutely certain the frame is the original one. You never know if the painting was put in a different frame at some point.

The frame can be useful, though, because it may be where a gallery label or other information was added. If you can find this, you can often track back more information about the artist by contacting that gallery.

Determining the Age

If you have the artist’s name, you can likely determine when the painting was created by searching for that artist. If you don’t have that information, it’s going to be more difficult. If the painting was handed down to you from your parents or other family member, can you trace its history? When did the family member buy the painting?


The hardest part is to determine the value of the artwork. This is where you’re likely going to want to have an art appraisal expert look at the piece. This is especially important if you’re learning how to sell art online. You’ll want a good idea of the actual value of the piece before you try to sell it.

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