The Art Market
Research Paper Due on Monday, May 1 :0)
Marilyn Minter, Bottled Blonde, 2006. Enamel on aluminum.











"When one reflects on art collectors Robert and Ethel Scull, what often springs to mind is Robert Rauschenberg giving Robert Scull an angry shove after the 1973 auction of 50 of the couple’s works at Sotheby Parke Bernet, when the artist’s Thaw (1958), purchased by the Sculls in the late ’50s for $900, sold for $85,000. Rauschenberg famously said, 'I’ve been working my ass off for you to make that profit.'” - Roni Feinstein in Art in America

Andy Warhol, Ethel Scull 36 Times, 1963.











Mona Lisa Takes New York
"The art market as we have come to know it as a far more recent creation, the effect of an international bourgeoisie that, reconstructed after World War II, emerged in the boom years of the sixties with money to burn on art, particularly American Pop, that brand which, as the art historian Thomas Crow has put it, 'looked like products being sold like products.'" - Art Since 1900











"If the standard-bearer of the eighties boom was an advertising executive like Saatchi, then his counterpart in the last upswing was a hedge-fund manager like Steve Cohen, who has used his enormous profits as founder of SAC Capital to build an extensive collection of postwar art in a short time. According to Amy Cappellazzo, deputy chairman of Christie's auction house, the new type of collector [understands contemporary art] 'as an assest one can borrow against, or trade on and defer capital gains taxes on' and regarded the art market essentially as a branch of the securities markets. An added attraction [is] that insider traiding and price fixing, illegal in other areas of investment, [remain] standard practices in the art world." - Art Since 1900
Sold in 2006 by David Geffen to
Steve Cohen for $137.5 million
Willem De Kooning, Woman III, 1953.










Sold in 1990 at NY auction for $82.5 million
$75 million, plus a 10 percent buyer's commission
$135.0 million adjusted to 2009’s inflation
Vincent Van Gogh, Portrait of Dr. Gachet, 1890.











During the First Gulf War, the lack of liquidity of major financial markets combined with the bankruptcy of financial institutions and the economic climate of recession caused art prices to shrink by 55% between 1990 to 1993. - Artprice
2010 sold at auction for $290,500
Julian Schnabel, Portrait of Dennis Hopper, 2008.











"In 1993, the New York Times writer N. R. Kleinfield tested the desperation of Soho dealers. Haggling like a man buying a used car, Kleinfield consistently extracted 20 percent reductions, the discount level reserved today for major collectors and museums. At Leo Castelli, he was offered what had been only a year earlier a $400,000 Lichtenstein sculpture for $270,000." - Artnet
Sandro Chia, The Idleness of Sisyphus, 1981.











Purchased in 1941 by Victor and Sally Ganz for $7,000
Sold in 1997 by the Ganzes at auction for $49 million

In 2006, Steve Wynn tore a silver dollar sized hole into the canvas with his elbow, after finalizing $139 million sale of the work the day before. He released the buyer, Steve Cohen, from the sale and restored the painting at a cost of $90 million. He then sold the restored painting in 2013 to Cohen for $155 million.

Pablo Picasso, Le Rêve, 1932.











In a private sale in 2006, Maria Altmann sold the work to Ronald Lauder for $135 million
New York Times art critic, Michael Kimmelman described the heirs as "cashing in" and thus transforming a "story about justice and redemption after the Holocaust [into] yet another tale of the crazy, intoxicating art market." "Wouldn't it have been remarkable (I'm just dreaming here) if the heirs had decided instead to donate one or more of the paintings to a public institution?"
Gustav Klimt, Adele Bloch Bauer, 1907.











Takashi Murakami, 727, 1996.
Jeff Koons, Rabbit, 1986. Polished stainless steel.











platinum cast of a human skull encrusted with 8,601 flawless diamonds, including a pear-shaped pink diamond located in the forehead of the skull
Cost the artist £14 million to produce
Hirst claims he sold the skull for the asking price of
£50 million ($100 million)
"Everyone in the art world knows Hirst hasn't sold the skull. It's clearly just an elaborate ruse to drum up publicity and rewrite the book value of all his other work." - Hirst critic
Damien Hirst, For the Love of God, 2007.











"The last decade has witnessed a transformation in image technologies as dramatic as those changes registered by the photography debates in the late twenties and early thirties and by various Pop manifestations in the late fifties and early sixties." - Art Since 1900
Loretta Lux, Ophelia, 2005.











Andreas Gursky, 99 Cent, 1999.











Thomas Struth, Shibuya Crossing, Tokyo, 1991.











Tony Oursler, Guilty, 1995.

 Tony Oursler, Bound Interrupter,  2012.






















"As [Jeff] Wall observed as early as 1989, 'The historical consciousness of the medium (of photography) is altered': rather than a direct 'message without a code' (as Roland Barthes defined it), the photograph might now be shot through complicated codes of various sorts." - Art Since 1900

Jeff Wall, The Storyteller, 1986.











Manet, Le Dejuener sur L'herbe, 1863.












Jeff Wall, A Sudden Gust of Wind (After Hokusai), 1993.











Hokusai, Yejiri Station, Province of Suruga, c. 1832.

Jeff Wall, A Sudden Gust of Wind (After Hokusai), 1993.











"As the critic Thierry de Duve has written, 'It is as though Wall had gone back to the fork in the roadway of history, to that very moment when, around Manet, painting was registering the shock of photography; and as though he had then followed the route that had not been taken by modern painting, and had incarnated the painter of modern life as a photographer.'" - Art Since 1900

Jeff Wall, The Destroyed Room, 1978.











Eugen Delacroix, The Death of Sardanapalus, 1827.











Symptomatically, the extraordinary prices paid at auction for photographs at the turn of the century demonstrated that the cultural value of the photograph was also increasing. For example, Andreas Gursky's 99 Cent II Diptychon sold for $3,346,456 at auction in 2007, making it the most expensive photograph at the time.

Andreas Gursky, 99 Cent II Diptychon, 2001.











Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #13, 1978.
Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #96, 1981.
In 2008, a print of #13 sold at auction for $902,500
In 2011, a print of #96 sold at auction for $3,890,500
making it the most expensive photograph











Then, Andreas Gursky's Rhein II sold at auction in November 2011 for $4,338,500


Andreas Gursky, Rhein II, 1999.











That price was (supposedly) trumped in 2014 by the sale of Peter Lik's Phantom for $6.5 million.
The NY Times exposed a dubious art inflation scheme that has called this price into question.


Peter Lik, Phantom, c. 2014.











Our image technologies have proven so successful in their strategies, that they lead us to question reality itself
and make the possible look artificial.









When viewing the images and footage of the attacks on the World Trade Centers, many said, "it looked like a movie."
The images were more real than real, hyper real, and we often prefer it that way.













Metamodern moment


Joe Rosenthal, Raising Old Glory at Iwo Jima, February 23, 1945.
Thomas E. Franklin, Flag Raising at Ground Zero, September 11, 2001.











Attack on the World Trade Center, September 11, 2001.











Joel Meyerowitz, World Trade Center, 2001.
Joel Meyerowitz, World Trade Center Welders, 2001.











“People are much more willing to believe that pictures lie than that they can express any kind of truth.” – Laurie Simmons
Gerhard Richter, September, 2005.





















Anonymous, Tourist Guy, 2001.











"It may be premature to say that we are living now in a 'post-photographic' age, despite the digitization of photography, for the illusions that the image can render have not yet been rendered irrelevant by the advancing picture-making technology of the computer. Nevertheless, it is a growing part of our contemporary consciousness that photography's function within our culture is at a crisis moment whose outcome is not yet certain." – Miles Orvell
Carolee Schneemann, Terminal Velocity, 2001.











The recovery in art prices has been accelerating since 2010 for example, with the record-breaking sales of Giacometti’s L’homme qui Marche for $103.78 million.

Giacommetti's Pointing Man was expected to sell for $130 million in Christie's 2015 Looking Forward to the Past sale. It sold for $141 million.
Alberto Giacometti, Walking Man, 1961.











Sold at auction in 2010 for $106.5 million, setting a world record price for any work of art
Pablo Picasso, Nude, Green Leaves and Bust, 1932.











Bought in 1973 by Michael Chriton, directly from his good friend, the artist.
Sold in 2010 for $28,642,500 million after Chriton's death, setting a record for artist.
Jasper Johns, Flag, 1960.











Sold for $119,922,500 in 2012, setting a new world record for any work of art at auction.
Edvard Munch, The Scream IV, 1895.











In 2013, estimated to sell between $25 and $35 million.
Sold at auction for $58,363,750.
Jackson Pollock, No. 19, 1948.











The three most valuable works of art (paintings) to date:
sold by George Embiricos to the State of Qatar in 2011 by private sale
for $259 to $300 million
sold by Staechelin family to the State of Qatar (possibly) in 2015 by private sale for suspected $300 million
sold by David Geffin to Kenneth Griffin in 2015 by private sale for suspected $300 million
Paul Cezanne, The Card Players, 1892 - 1893.
Paul Gaugin, When Will You Marry? 1892.
Willem De Kooning, Interchange, 1955.



The New York Times chose a strange way to publish a correction to its reporting two years ago that a Gauguin painting had been sold privately for $300m. A court case in London has shown that the painting was sold for $210m, a substantially lower but still phenomenal price.
Private sale prices are difficult to ascertain, with good reason. The parties who know the true price are very limited. But those who claim to know the price have several motivations that are not constrained by the truth.
Indeed, there is a perverse incentive upon all parties to inflate the value of a private sale: Seller gets bragging rights, buyer sets value for resale higher than price paid, and the person relating this information to the press gets to show they’re ‘informed’ on the biggest deals.
With all of that in mind, it is surprising to see the New York Times correct its initial report on the Gauguin by re-affirming the prices of other similar reports without an explanation of why those reports should be taken any more seriously than the now-refuted Gauguin report:
  At the very least, however, the suit has rearranged the top rankings for high art prices: Willem de Kooning’s 1955 painting “Interchanged” stands alone with a reported sale price of $300 million in 2016. Cézanne’s “Card Players” brought $250 million in a sale to the Qatari government in 2011._ArtMarketMonitor










UpWorthy - 9 Out of 10 Americans Are Completely Wrong About This Mind-Blowing Fact


How Much Do the 1% Earn?


Who are the 1%?