The global market for art is worth over $64 billion each year. Is it any wonder therefore that the ability for criminals to pass off works as those of the real artist/maker is also a huge and lucrative industry? Even professional art experts can be taken in - Museums such as New York’s Met Museum and Paris’s Le Louvre have fallen foul of convincing forgeries from sophisticated scammers. In 2018 a museum in southern France, which featured work by acclaimed painter Etienne Terrus, discovered that well over half of its entire collection was in fact comprised of fakes, some of which had artist signatures that simply wiped off when touched
Since his tragic death from an overdose at just 27 years old in 1988, street artist Jean-Michel Basquiat has become an art-market darling and near-legendary figure, the subjectof seemingly countless exhibitions, organized by leading institutions such as the Brooklyn Museum and London’s Barbican Centre, and mega-collector and former arts publishing magnate Peter Brant.
The row over the controversial statue of the British imperialist Cecil Rhodes has deepened after more than 150 academics from across Oxford University have refused to teach undergraduate students from Oriel College, where the monument stands, as long as it stays in place.
A Lost Winston Churchill Owned by the Onassis Family Hits the Block – A verdant landscape, The Moat, Breccles (1921), painted by the former British Prime Minister will be offered at Phillips’s 20th century and contemporary art evening sale on June 23. The picture was long thought to be lost—but in fact, it was simply hanging in the saloon of the Christina, the yacht owned by shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis. Around 50 years after Churchill gifted the painting to his friend, it will be sold by the Onassis family with an estimate of $1.5 million to $2 million.
Recently I have had a huge amount of correspondence from people looking to sell pieces of art they may have had hanging on a wall or lying in a garage for years. The recent opening up of shops and auction houses (and the success of online auctions) has
led to a real boom in sellers seeking to raise much needed cash as we exit the pandemic.
But what are all these things worth? How are you supposed to know a good deal from a bad deal?
I have always loved small antiques shops. Many amazing finds over the years have been in these little blink and you’ll miss it, tucked-out-of-the-way gems. Even if you don’t
find something earth-shattering, very often you can find fascinating and inspiring trinkets and treasures that will never fail to delight. You can also usually guarantee that you’ll find knowledgeable advice and sometimes even a fascinat- ing yarn or two from the custodians of these retail delights who, more often that not, are genuinely pleased for you to walk in and take an interest in their wares, and who can always play the game when it comes to the fun of haggling over price.
What Lockdown? While You Were at Home, These Art Dealers Where Quietly Crisscrossing the US to Get an Edge on the Competition