Carol Vogel surveys the auction houses and her favorite sources for a recap of the state of the auction market. You already know the tune but some of lyrics have changed:
“We knew from 1990 that when the market cools, it happens very suddenly, in the course of two weeks,” said Marc Porter, president of Christie’s in America. “What we didn’t know is if it was going to happen last May or last month. Now we’re in a period of assessment as we try to figure where we go from here.”
Sotheby’s Tobias Meyer mentions Beuys and Polke as possible names he’ll focus on going forward and he makes a few predictions about what won’t show up at auction any time soon:
Such results present difficult choices for experts putting together the next big round of auctions. “Nobody’s going to be selling a Jeff Koons or a Bacon or a Lichtenstein any time soon,” said Tobias Meyer, head of Sotheby’s contemporary art department. “Why would they, since they missed the boat?”
Philippe Ségalot reminds Vogel that Felix Gonzalez-Torres and Robert Gober had particularly fertile periods during the slump of the early 1990s (though it isn’t clear how that would be relevant to the auction market for their works that only came to life nearly a decade later.) But he likes Michael Day Jackson.