Forbes.com tries to stir the pot with a story on Sotheby’s Jeff Koons easter egg sculpture being sold by, it is said, Daniel Loeb. The story brings together a number of themes from the art boom by wondering if certain collectors will support Koons prices by buying the work. It isn’t clear that the Forbes writer understands that if the lot is bought in there is no effect on Koons’s price structure as opposed to selling for a low price. So by the logic presented here, those with large Koons holdings should be conspiring to make sure no one buys the work, no?
“The giant snapping sound you heard in the last six months was the sound of wallets closing,” says Levin.
Over the past half-dozen years, the Koons market has been supported by big art-world players such as publisher Peter Brant, Manhattan real estate magnate Aby Rosen and Ukrainian billionaire Victor Pinchuk, all of whom own works by Koons and therefore have a vested interest in making sure his prices stay high. As does Koons’ dealer, Larry Gagosian, who sold the egg to Loeb in the first place.
But in this market, none of them may be willing to put up the cash. Two art-world players predict that Gagosian will not participate in the bidding.
After all of the stories about greedy speculators flipping works to panting collectors, it is interesting to see that little mention is made of Loeb’s decision to sell a work fabricated in 2008. A savvy market participant like Loeb surely isn’t selling because he’s expecting a windfall gain. Or is he?
Koons Egg Sculpture to Test Art Market Waters (Forbes.com)