Very wide-ranging cover
To protect the artwork and collecting sector, there are specific insurance policies. Their purpose is to compensate for any damage caused, either by repairing the work of art or by compensating for the loss. These policies have very broad coverage and can insure both the assets of a private collector and the damage that may be caused to works of art when they are moved from one place to another to be showcased in an exhibition. In the latter case, the insurance is referred to as “nail to nail”, meaning that, as well as all the risks for damage to property usually covered by this type of insurance, the risk of an accident that may occur during transport from the place of origin of the work to its destination (gallery, museum, etc.), as well as on its return, is also added. It should not be forgotten that the greatest proportion of artwork thefts occur during transportation.
Works of art in the home
Would home insurance cover this type of asset in the case of a collector who has works of art in their home for their own enjoyment? It is important to know that, within the limits of valuation, some multi-risk policies cover fire or water damage that a piece may suffer; others do not cover this type of damage, but do offer specific cover for works of art (accidents, pet damage, humidity, etc.). It is recommended that any person, company or institute that owns works of art valued at more than 25,000 euros insure these assets with a specific all-risk art insurance policy.
In order to take out an art insurance policy, the artwork must be valued. This task is carried out by experts from the insurance company, who also determine the premium and the compensation to be paid in the event of a claim. The valuation is usually fixed depending on the age of the work, the technique, the author and its market price. It is not unusual that, in order to insure an important work or even a collection, the insurance company can establish where the work of art is to be exhibited, as well as oversee the existence of certain security conditions such as an alarm system, armored door, bars on the windows, fire extinguishers, and the like.
As a side note, one exception to the broad coverage of these policies concerns damage resulting from the evolution of the chemical components within the artwork. This is especially true in contemporary art, as it often involves experimentation with old and new materials of very different compositions that can, over time, present unexpected chemical and physical reactions.