Graves International Art, originally called The Collectors Exchange, began in Jacksonville, Florida in 1978 and steadily grew to become the largest fine art gallery in North Florida. The company has since moved to Charlottesville, North Carolina and it continues to flourish. From antique to contemporary pieces, the father-son duo of Graves International Art only sells original prints and paintings. You’d be hard-pressed to find a reproduction in this gorgeous gallery.
What first sparked your love for fine art?
My love for fine art was sparked while growing up in an artistic family of painters, writers, and an architect father. I was surrounded by art; it was innate.
I like to say, breathing in the essence of our history and culture is one reason why art should be owned and personally enjoyed, not merely visited in a museum.
What inspires you?
Original thinking inspires me. Out of the box analytical thinking, and people who are always looking for and discovering something new. I love including original and thought-provoking pieces to share with the world through my art galleries.
How did you become a dealer?
Before I became a dealer I was a collector. I then decided to make my avocation my vocation. We’re a good team because I’m experienced in business and fine art collecting, and Alex is experienced in social media and online marketing.
How do you help clients find the perfect piece for their home or business?
To help clients find the perfect piece for their home, I try to learn as much as I can about them and what their predilections are, then I find them what they want based on my contacts, knowledge, and expertise.
What special qualities do you look for when you’re finding a piece to add to your collection?
When looking to add a new piece to our collection, we look for something unique and original, or that simply exhibits great talent.
How important is artwork in creating beautiful interiors?
Art is aesthetic. What is aesthetic is in the eye of the beholder. If the idea is to create a beautiful interior, then that requires the introduction of fine artworks.
What should a new collector look for when procuring fine art?
If you’re a new collector, expose yourself to as much art as possible. Visit museums and galleries. Through this process determine for yourself what you personally consider attractive and compelling, and then go find it.
If you love Graves International Art’s gorgeous pieces, check out the rest of their collection right here on The HighBoy: