Posted by Michael Wendorf on March 16, 1999 at 12:26:41:
In Reply to: Re: reasons for acquiring a piece posted by Steve Price on March 16, 1999 at 09:40:39:
: Dear Tom and Everyone,
: Tom correctly identifies peer approval as one of the criteria many collectors use in one way or another. For instance, a distinguished provenance always increases the price a rug will bring at auction, and my take on this is that the buyers are willing to pay for the implied approval of the distinguished previous owner.
: On the other hand, I don't grasp Tom's implications of auction purchasing. How does purchasing 90+% at auction identify a collector as having limited appreciation of the art he collects? Could one make the converse argument, that the collector who buys mostly from established dealers has limited confidence in his own ability to judge? I don't think so, but I raise this to illustrate my reluctance to adopt the opposite view.
: Tom's post also prompted me to go through my own collection. I proudly report that the percentage of what I own that was obtained through auction is between 20% and 25%.
: Steve Price
Now I am confused. I have never bought a piece for my collection through a major auction although I guess I have a few things that went through a major auction. But I have bought from both established and itinerant dealers and in the field. I have generally avoided the major auctions to avoid the hype and the things which I guess are supposed to inspire confidence. I guess I would like to understand these people who only buy at auction better in terms of what they think they are getting and what kind of a collection they are creating.
Interesting idea to me. Michael
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