Great Works of Art or Great Forgery?

The highest price paid for a work of art was $250 million in 2011. Obviously, there’s a lot of money in selling art. Unfortunately this also means there is a lot of money in producing forgeries.

TheProcuress_1490391cOne notable forger sold $60 million worth of phony Vermeers to a slew of people throughout Europe before being caught. When it comes to appraising fine art even the experts can get duped and when they do, buyers pay too high a price.  Continue reading

How Much is that Card in the Window?

tradingcardblogAs the 2014 football season kicks off, collectors around the world are actively trading Seattle Seahawk quarterback Russell Wilson logo patches cards, jerseys and other related memos. The unlikely Super Bowl champions hammered a crushing defeat to the favored Denver Broncos, 43 to 8. It was the largest point differential in 21 years. When it comes to sports, numbers matter. Where would sports be without its love affair with statistics? Continue reading

Valuing Artwork without Signatures: The Case of Maxfield Parrish

In determining the value of a painting, a number of factors must be considered, including the artist, provenance, the quality of work, period (date), and condition. In many instances we value paintings whose style and date of creation match those of well known artists though they lack signatures. School or Genre paintings are high quality works created in the same style of an artist but aren’t directly connected to them by signature or provenance. For example, many drawings in the market which cannot be attributed to Rembrandt yet have all the physical attributes of a Rembrandt are sold as “school of Rembrandt”. While an unsigned painting by a particular artist would have less value than a signed example by that very same artist, unsigned genre paintings do not command the highest prices in the marketplace.

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Identifying Picasso Prints and the Caution of Accepting Previous Appraisals

Enservio Select recently took on the task of appraising a Picasso print, which valued at $12,000.00 at claim intake. Measuring 11 ½” x 8 ½” from the Vollard Suite, the appraisal described the piece as an etching on paper titled Jeune Sculpteur Finissant un Platre by Pablo Picasso dated March 25, 1933, edition 186/340.

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The Value in Stolen Art

A homeowner returns after an evening out and finds that her home was robbed. Among the many items missing is an expensive piece of art passed down for several generations in her family. After filing a police report and a claim with her insurance company, the insurance company contacts an appraiser to help them determine the value of the painting at the time of the loss so that their insured can be paid. In my career as a fine art appraiser at Enservio Select, I am often presented with these circumstances. Arriving at a value is just one part of the service we provide. I will also complete a brief search to make sure the work was not previously stolen. The implications of previously stolen work are far reaching and, if not discovered, can financially affect both the insured and the insurance company. Continue reading