Swamp Light, 2012, Jo-Ann Sanborn
acrylic on board, 7"x5"
Yes, young people are buying original art. Only a small portion have the guts and money to go into a nuts and bolts gallery. Besides, they really don't like anyone telling them what they should like, and many don't have the money for large, prestigious purchases.
They're finding their art in new ways, and often on the Internet. In this no-man's land a new collector can browse at ease. They can look at a piece again and again. They can read a blog, learn about an artist, check out what's new and find something to love at a price they can see and know they can afford to spend. All in relative anonymity.
The savvy ones can leave a comment and see if the artist will answer in a way that speaks their language. They might email back and forth about a piece to help them take the measure of an artist. If they don't like the interaction, they can drop out before they have to commit.
If a young person finds art to suit them, it's a win-win. They've been exposed to a lot of different work in the hunt for their special piece. Connections are being made in new ways, and as an artist, you've got to be out there, if only because that's where they are.