By Ada Popescu
Bucharest-born Irina Moreno, left Romania in 1989, after graduating computer science at the Politehnica University of Bucharest. Her first stop was Austria, then Canada for ten years and after that Detroit, together with her family of four by this time. In Detroit she felt the time had come for her to start doing something she really wanted to do – art. Once accredited in art appraisal she set-up her own company which she ran for 12 years. She appraised art objects, offered consultancy on managing collections, advised on buying and selling on the primary and secondary markets, helped people understand which art fairs they should go to, what artists to look out for and why something costs this instead of that.
Irina left the US and took a Master’s degree in contemporary art at the Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London, then spent a year in Paris and now she’s back in Bucharest, lecturing on art markets and contemporary art. Irina remembers her time spent at Sotheby’s in London as intellectually stimulating. She knew the US art scene, but the European one was different. Irina graduated with Distinction – a strong achievement when you consider that only 10% of graduates in the UK achieve a distinction.
Moreno has been back in Bucharest for 4 months and is enjoying the city, which she has found to have completely changed from the one she left almost 30 years ago. She likes the mix of old and new and she finds the art scene exciting. Still, she feels there is room for improvement, with people misusing and abusing terms, not knowing how to buy or what the differences are between buying and collecting or how to build an art collection. And this is a large part of the reason she agreed to do an art lecture series when Bucharest’s Mobius Gallery invited her.
The first lecture was held on March 30th and the topic was “Factors that determine value” – such as size, medium, edition, condition, story, historical importance, to name but a few. Moreno presented artworks that had been through her appraisal company in Detroit and explained some of the ways in which the value of an art object fluctuates according to these factors.
For the next lectures Moreno intends to talk more about contemporary art. Every lecture will have a different subject covering topics such as building and managing a collection, art market players, reasons for the proliferation of art fairs and the impact on disseminating and collecting art, a behind-the-scenes look at art curating, a.s.o. The second lecture will be held on April 25th, at 7 pm and the title is “What do art fairs and Starbucks have in common?”.
For information regarding price, location and future lectures see this Facebook page at @mobius.contemporaryartgallery.