The $12 Million Stuffed Shark The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 4/13/2010
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

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Why would a smart New York investment banker pay $12 million for the decaying, stuffed carcass of a shark? By what alchemy does Jackson Pollock's drip paintingNo. 5, 1948sell for $140 million?Intriguing and entertaining,The $12 Million Stuffed Sharkis aFreakonomicsapproach to the economics and psychology of the contemporary art world. Why were record prices achieved at auction for works by 131 contemporary artists in 2006 alone, with astonishing new heights reached in 2007? Don Thompson explores the money, lust, and self-aggrandizement of the art world in an attempt to determine what makes a particular work valuable while others are ignored.This book is the first to look at the economics and the marketing strategies that enable the modern art market to generate such astronomical prices. Drawing on interviews with past and present executives of auction houses and art dealerships, artists, and the buyers who move the market, Thompson launches the reader on a journey of discovery through the peculiar world of modern art. Surprising, passionate, gossipy, revelatory,The $12 Million Stuffed Sharkreveals a great deal that even experienced auction purchasers do not know.

Author Biography

Don Thompson teaches marketing and economics in the MBA program at the Schulich School of Business at York University in Toronto. He has  taught at the London School of Economics and at Harvard Business School. He lives in London and Toronto.

Table of Contents

The $12 Million Stuffed Sharkp. 1
Branding and Insecurityp. 9
Branded Auctionsp. 19
Branded Dealersp. 27
The Art of the Dealerp. 41
Art and Artistsp. 53
Damien Hirst and the Sharkp. 61
Warhol, Koons, and Eminp. 73
Charles Saatchi: Branded Collectorp. 85
Christie's and Sotheby'sp. 95
Choosing an Auction Hammerp. 103
Auction Psychologyp. 117
The Secret World of Auctionsp. 131
Francis Bacon's Perfect Portraitp. 145
Auction Houses vs. Dealersp. 157
Art Fairs: The Dealer's Final Frontierp. 169
Art and Moneyp. 177
Pricing Contemporary Artp. 189
Fakesp. 201
Art Criticsp. 209
Museumsp. 215
End Gamep. 227
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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