What is art worth? How can a work by Pablo Picasso be sold for more than $100,000,000? This fascinating book explains the market for art—and art’s value for all of us.
In straightforward prose that doesn’t mystify art or deny its special allure, prominent art dealer and market expert Michael Findlay offers a close up and personal view of almost a half century in the business of art. He engagingly explains art’s three kinds of value: commercial; social; and what he terms its essential value—the range of responses to art that we as individuals have depending on our culture, education, and life experience. Few avid collectors are immune to the thrill of rising market value, but Findlay argues that buying for investment alone is seldom smart. A genuine love of art and the ways it may enrich one’s social life also play important roles. Down-to-earth and with a touch of dry wit, he explains exactly how artworks are valued and reveals the workings of the art market. Enhancing his narrative are wise advice, insider anecdotes, and tales of scoundrels and scams, celebrity collectors, and remarkable discoveries. Generously illustrated, Findlay’s distillation of a lifetime’s experience makes this insider’s guide indispensable for all who love art, not only collectors but true “amateurs” as well.
"No one knows more about the market in Impressionist, modern, and contemporary art than Michael Findlay. His new book, The Value of Art, is one of the best ever published on the art world."
Milton Esterow, ARTnews
"The Value of Art is an engaging, immensely informative book on the art market and vagaries of taste. Marshaling decades of experience as a collector, art dealer, and auction house specialist, Michael Findlay demystifies the buying and selling of art; at the same time, he conveys his belief in the power of art to enlighten and reveal the seemingly unknowable essence of things."
Judith Goldman, curator and author of Robert & Ethel Scull: Portrait of a Collection