Museum art collections do not happen by magic, nor do homes typically come filled with great art pieces upon purchase. It takes time, resources and talent to build a cache of artists’ creative output that gives a good return on the investment, emotionally and financially.

Not everyone is well versed, however, on the fine art of collecting. It is a reality that area gallery owners, museum directors and other art leaders suggested is something their businesses and institutions are particularly well-suited to address.

The topic arose during an “S” Salon at Jan and Robert Dilenschneider’s Darien home in May. The couple presided over a far-ranging conversation, led by Bobbie Roessner, executive editor of Hearst Connecticut Media Group, which touched on several arts and culture related topics.

D. Samuel Quigley, director of the Lyman Allyn Art Museum in New London, said it can be easy to become glib about the enormous privilege and responsibility museum directors and gallery owners have in being custodians and purveyors of such distinct and authentic objects — what some day will be material remains of human culture.

“We would like to invite more people into the privilege of that circle,” he said, adding museums and galleries can tap the potential the digital world provides, leading a younger generation of aspiring collectors to articles and resources that delve into art history and art movements, as well as ways to best approach the appreciation and acquisition of art.

The reasons people collect are varied, too. Some gallery owners said clients often come through their doors on a mission to bolster their home décor. They are working on a budget and need advice on aesthetics and investment potential. Others stressed collecting art is more about falling in love with a piece and building one’s decor around it. Ultimately, it’s about encouraging a spirit of collecting, said Fernando Luis Alvarez, owner of Stamford’s Fernando Luis Alvarez Gallery, in which the buyer develops an intrinsic link with the creator.

“When you educate people on the importance of collecting over rushing to find a color to match their curtains and sofas, you are not just putting a piece of artwork in the hands of an individual, but you are also getting them involved in the career of an artist,” he said.

During the next several weeks, on these pages and on the web, “S” will be sharing images and observations from that evening.