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June 14, 2005


Renee Levow

I am not so sure full transparency would be a good thing amoung art dealers. Full transparency would lower profits for the art dealers. If we lower profits, or get to very little profit for art dealers, many would leave the business. We need art dealers to support the lesser known artists. Think through how the art market works. Many successful dealers represent and sell works of both "blue chip" artists, which are easier to sell, and "new artists" which sell for less and are typically harder to sell. The dealers' plan to earn profits on the known artists and bet on a variety of "new" artists. We want dealers to be able to afford betting on new artists. It is the dealers, primarily, that bring new artists to the attention of curators, who can then bring the new artists to the attention of the general public who visit museums. The art dealers support the art community.

Part of the fun of art collecting is the research process. It is true that it is often hard to know how good a price you are really getting when you buy from a dealers unless that exact work in the same condition has recently sold at auction.
But that's part of the sport of art collecting. Developing the knowledge, talent and know how to get a good deal. After all, art is a subjective medium. It is not uncommon for two reputable dealers viewing the same work of art to disagree on the long term value. And that's the beauty and purpose of art. In the end it is emotional experience we each have individually when we view works of arts that is the true value.

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