Why Don’t Art Dealers Like Talking About Money?

December 2, 2013 in Daily Bulletin

Frieze Artwork

In a world of price comparison websites and money-saving tips, a haven still exists for those who dislike talking about money; at fairs where people buy art.

  • Dealers dislike the media’s focus on prices, because they feel that it detracts from more interesting conversations about the quality of the art. To an art dealer, the value of a work isn’t necessarily reflected in its market value.
  • The co-director of Frieze, a London art fair, says that you can see that dealers hang their art in a way to be as aesthetic as possible; not to make the most sales as possible.
  • Advertising prices also creates the illusion that a particular piece of art is for sale, when it may well not be. Or at least, not to everyone.
  • Critics however say not disclosing prices is simply about controlling markets. A dealer may want to sell to particular organisations or groups. An artist may want to get displayed at a prestigious location and be willing to slash prices for this to happen, but wouldn’t want anyone to know about it.
  • Price disclosure is also all about reputation. Artists want their art to become more valuable over time, and the difference between how much a painting sells for the first and most recent time is taken as an indication of the artist’s calibre.

For the full article written by a newspaper that would like more price disclosure, click here. If you’re interested in the difference between primary and secondary art markets click here, or for something a bit different here are a tailor’s suggestions on selling art through storytelling.

Source: The Art Newspaper