AWAD is pleased to welcome Christine Skinner principle at Portfolio Fine Art and The Darkroom Society.
As is our practice with new members, we asked Christine to share some of her background and a bit about her business.
What is the name of your business and where are you located? when did you start?
The name of my business is Portfolio Fine Art which I started in 2018. This year, I also launched a new site called The Darkroom Society concentrating on archival quality photographs. We are located in Ross, California.
What is your professional background?
I was born into the art and antique business. My parents imported Japanese antiques to sell in the US, then did a ‘180’ and sold European art and antiques in Japan. I studied at the University of California Santa Barbara, moved to San Francisco and started working at Bonhams Auction house, eventually becoming Director of the monthly Art + Decor auctions. Following that, I worked as a Generalist Appraiser for the Trusts and Estates department before launching my own business.
What inspired you to take the leap and start your own business?
It was a difficult decision, as I was leaping from a place of security into the unknown. I had always wanted to run my own business but it all seemed overwhelming to start something from the ground up. I knew I wanted to invest in and sell works of art, but to deal with all facets of a business from building a website, networking, marketing and advertising, operations and logistics and accounting, you really have to learn to wear many hats. I do have to say that my main inspiration was, and still is, my husband. He has supported me unconditionally, cheered me on and always encouraged me to pursue my passions.
What does your business offer, in terms of goods and services?
For Portfolio Fine Art, my main offerings are limited edition, fine art prints by blue chip artists that I acquire through the secondary market. I also offer paintings and original works by both established and emerging artists. For The Darkroom Society my main focus is strictly on archival photographic prints. I also offer consultation to private individuals and companies who are navigating the art market in terms of buying, selling, and appraisals.
What excites you about having joined the Association of Women Art Dealers?
I am excited to be part of a global network with whom I can share information and advice. As part of the AWAD community, I will be able to broaden my horizons, make professional connections and can hopefully offer useful advice through my experiences, especially as it pertains to women forging their own way in the art world.
What brings you joy in your work?
My number one joy, is connecting people with artwork that gives them joy. There is nothing more amazing than hearing from an ecstatic client who feels a strong connection to the artwork I sold them.
If you were a work of art, what piece would you be and why?
It would be Pablo Picasso’s ‘Tête de Femme’ (Head of a Woman), 1962. It is an amazing linocut with a composition that features a hidden triple portrait with frontal and side views of a woman’s head. I feel that owning an art business makes me feel the same way – constantly looking at all directions at once!