Friday, May 18, 2007

Albright-Knox "Auction Coups"

"Radical conservative" anti-deaccessionist Lee Rosenbaum notes that the Albright-Knox "scored unexpectedly large windfalls for its deaccessioned masterpieces at yesterday's African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian art sale at Sotheby's: Its bronze Benin Head of an Oba fetched $4.74 million against an estimate of $1-1.5 million and its Aztec Stone Figure of the Goddess with Tasseled Headdress, Known as Chalchiuhtlicue, sold for $1.22 million, compared to an estimate of merely $100,000-150,000." All told, the museum earned nearly $6 million in this, the third of six auctions of items from its permanent collection. The Buffalo News says that brings the total up to $26 million, a figure that is "expected to increase dramatically by the final auction June 7, when the gallery auctions a number of antiquities, most notably the highly valued bronze 'Artemis and the Stag.'" They are auctioning off another 10 items of American Indian art today, expected to bring a total of less than $100,000.