‘The most successful auctioneers manage to remain themselves in the rostrum. Easier said than done!’
I caught the auction bug when I was seven years old. 365体育备用网址Every weekend my father took me to the local salerooms of the Drouot auction house. I was fascinated by this other world — by the Proustian atmosphere, messy, full of charm and discoveries. I would watch the auctioneer up there selling books, wine, furniture, pictures. I relished the theatricality of it all.
My first recollection of a work of art was at the same age — and I walked on it. I will never forget the astonishing project of Christo365体育备用网址, who had wrapped up the Pont Neuf in Paris. It was the first time I saw his work, and the first time I set eyes on that bridge. Christo’s radical and poetic approach in revealing something while hiding it astounded me.
Auctioneers live with the unexpected. 365体育备用网址Until proceedings begin, you have no clue how the room will respond, how a particular painting will fare. That’s exactly why I get a kick out of it. And when you think that the sale of a single lot — an event that is over and done with in a matter of seconds — might be the culmination of months and sometimes years of work, that is a rewarding part of the job. I guess the most successful auctioneers manage to remain themselves in the rostrum. Easier said than done!
Why do we have art at all? 365体育备用网址The interesting paradox is this: art is anything but a necessity, yet we all need it in our lives. We are all drawn to beauty, one way or another, and art is a way for humankind to create hope. It elevates us to a plane where we find meaning. As Duchamp said, it is the viewer who gives the meaning to the picture.