Tuesday, October 06, 2009


We probably should have given this one to the letter G now that many art dealers, finding the word ‘dealer’ kinda offensive, have moved over to the more toney ‘gallerist’. The other reason for the drift was possibly because in the über good-times cutting a great deal was not a skill that needed flourishing. The selling proposition moved from Duveen’s “You’re not ready for that yet” to “We’ll put you in the queue, but no promises.” And yet, although the auction houses are jostling hard, it is the art dealers who largely set the pace and the prices. All this in an opaque world centred on the iconic question, “What’s it worth?”
Illustration: Pippin Barr