Having toured the contents of an upscale home north of Phoenix, the walls and surfaces peppered with primarily Southwestern art of the 20th century, I came home to contemplate a plan for the homeowner to “rehome” his art holdings intelligently.
One problem recognized was the lack of major works by recognized artists. “Major” constitutes examples deemed to represent the artist’s best work.
Another issue stemmed from the acquisition of roughly 500 artworks spanning a relatively short period of time. I used to consider long term art purchasing to exceed ten years, currently twenty (20) years or greater represents long term. The reason the time held is so impacting has to do with the means to sell the art. Selling frequently is accomplished with help from others. Help can be an auction, a private broker or a gallery. In either case, fees for selling through an auction consist of a seller’s commission, catalogue fees, shipping and insurance and in reality buyer’s fees, as all buyers bid with recognition of the additional funds they are committing with each bid known as the buyer’s commission. These fees can total 40 – 50%. Likewise brokerage fees are 40-50% unless a larger ticket item is involved triggering 30-40% fees. Million dollar properties involve still lower fees. Park the art in a gallery and it becomes a target for a “deal”, meaning a reduced price, just to “get it done”.
More on this topic next month.
Corinne Cain of www.SavvyCollector.com