News & Views

Seller bidding beyond reserve?

15 May 2018

We start today with the fact there are [only] two types of auctions. Just as state law dictates all across the United States, we noted as such here:

The right for the seller to bid — outside of a forced sale — is dictated by which type of auction is being conducted. In a "with reserve" auction, the seller may bid and in a "without reserve" auction, the seller may not bid.

How do we know online bidders are real?

4 May 2018

This is a question we get on a somewhat regular basis … “How do we know online bidders are real?” What is my answer with little or no other information? “We don’t.” However, it’s good to look at the big picture here.

Such a bird’s-eye view of this issue would include questions such as, “How do we know that live bidder is real?” “How do we know that car salesman’s final price is his final price?” “Do we know that was really orange roughy?” “How do we know … anything for sure?

Yusof Ghani in Madrid

16 April 2018

Malaysian senior artist Yusof Ghani, 68, will stage a solo exhibition at Galeria BAT Alberto Cornejo in Madrid from May 7-10.

Entitled, Bandera - The Spirit of Celebration, the exhibition will feature 30 oil on canvas works from the artist’s Segerak VII series. They range in size from 107cm by 76cm to 366cm by 220cm and are priced from RM35,000 to RM350,000.

The abstract paintings are said to feature the characteristic strokes of the artist and which converge to form "subtle faces and figures" that appear to be in constant movement and interaction. 

Auction bidder buys, takes … and doesn’t pay

9 April 2018

Our discussion today regards a [hopefully] somewhat infrequent occurrence at personal property auctions. A bidder registers for the auction, bids, buys, removes, thus taking possession and control of the subject property but doesn’t pay.

The question we tend to get is, “This is theft, right?” We typically answer, “Probably not, and likely only a contract breach.” However, could a contract breach rise to a criminal matter?

Sotheby’s HK 2018 Spring auctions rake in US$466.5mil

6 April 2018

Sotheby's Spring 2018 Hong Kong auction series concluded with a grand total of HK$3.64 billion / US$466.5 million, against a pre-sale estimate of HK$2.75-3.86 billion / US$353-495 million*, and with a strong combined sell-through rate of 89%.

Selling Malaysian Art in HK

3 April 2018

While Sotheby’s Hong Kong reported all the Southeast Asian works in the “evening sales” of modern art and contemporary art were sold on March 31, there were also many unsold works in the “day sale” of Southeast Asian works on April 1.

Responding to our query on their press release which reported that, “All Southeast Asian Modern works sold” and that “Southeast Asian Contemporary works 100% sold”, Sotheby’s Hong Kong spokesman replies that the statement specifically refers to the “Southeast Asian Art sold in Modern Art Evening Sale and Contemporary Art Evening Sale.”

Sotheby’s HK modern & contemporary art evening sales rake in US$132mil

2 April 2018

Touted to be the second highest total for an evening sale of Asian and Western art, Sotheby's Hong Kong just concluded its auction of modern and contemporary art bringing in HK$1.04 billion / US$132 million on March 31.

In a press release, Sotheby’s Asia chairman Patti Wong states, “Tonight’s outstanding results, with strong prices for both Asian and Western art and an exceptional sell-through rate of 97%, is a testament to our efforts to bring fresh and outstanding works to our clients.

Curiosities in HK auction

27 March 2018

Sotheby’s Hong Kong Curiosity IV antiques sale on April 2, "encompasses material from the Cretaceous period 70 million years ago to the present."

In a press release, the auction house adds that the "curiosities" are "from civilisations and cultures that once flourished and have now vanished, from the Okvik civilisation in the Bering Sea to Egypt’s new Kingdom, from the Olmec in Mexico to Kamakura Japan.”