The Private Sales


    Private negotiations for the sale of works of art are growing

    Inside the auction houses, in addition to the public sale at auction, there is an increasing use of Private Sales, private sales negotiations that ensure absolute discretion for the collector.

    The turnover of Private Sales according to Art Basel and UBS’s “The Art Market 2020” Report has grown, with sales for Christie’s and Sotheby’s of over $ 1.8 billion.

    The Private Sales service guarantees the collector the utmost confidentiality, so private sale has a dedicated team, which works all over the world regardless of the established auction calendar.

    The auction houses offer the service in particular to those who are looking for a specific work for their collection or on the contrary for those who want to put on the market, in total privacy, one or more pieces of their collection, without however the hurry for an immediate sale.

    Private negotiation objects are not only works of art, but also design, jewelry, watches, antiques, bags, old books or manuscripts that exceed $ 100,000.

    On the occasion of a Private Sale, the seller establishes the net sale price with the auction house, after careful artwork evaluation, under which he is not willing to go down, and consequently the team establishes a request price by contacting only and only a limited number of possible buyers, who have expressed interest over time for a particular artist, subject, technique or simply have a budget that corresponds to the asking price.

    The reasons why a private negotiation is chosen, rather than a public auction, can be different, including:

    • The owner of the work, whether a collector or an institution, wishes to maintain absolute confidentiality regarding the sale of one or more works;
    • The work has remained unsold in auction, but the owner still wants to proceed with the sale, through a different channel;
    • Contrary to sales expectations, the work could only affect a very small number of potential buyers;
    • The auction house knows and hypothesizes a possible buyer, starting a private negotiation.

    Even in Private Sales, experts are careful in carrying out careful due diligence and provenance investigations, for this reason the works must never lack adequate documentation, including the Certificate of Authenticity, which is essential.

    Among the private sales that have made history there is that of the Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer painted by the artist Gustav Klimt in 1907, owned by Maria Altmann (1916 – 2011).

    Altman, Adele’s nephew, who emigrated to the United States due to the Nazi persecution, managed to regain the picture following a long legal battle ended in 2006 against the Republic of Austria.

    In the same year, cosmetic tycoon Ronald Lauder, completely enraptured by the beauty of the work, acquired it for $ 135 million, exposing it to the public inside the Neue Galerie in New York.

    Are you ready to discover Private Sales?


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