Dealer Kenny Schachter laments the machismo of art collecting in his Artnet column set at ABMB. As if to prove his point, he follows with his own tale of one-upsmanship:
I found myself engaged in a shootout when I attempted to buy a painting on behalf of a client. As I negotiated via text message with the proprietor of the gallery to settle on a satisfactory purchase price, a friend informed me that someone was in the booth simultaneously trying to wrestle the work away from me. Normally when a dealer claims further interest from elsewhere in the very work you are after, it gives rise to nothing more than disbelief, but in this case it was perfectly so.
Off I scurried to the scene, which with 260 galleries unsystematically installed throughout a massive convention center, was no easy feat. An acquaintance sat in one corner of the both, his back turned to me, unaware that he was engaged in battle with an unknown-known opponent. Though my bid was more than 10 percent less than the collector was offering, he wanted a 24-hour holding period to make a determination; I was willing to pull the trigger then and there.
Notes were exchanged out of the sightline of the seated client, illustrating auction history, a must with secondary market goods. Based on my relationship with the dealer and my willingness to commit, I ended up with the work. Welcome to the land of anything goes.
Art Dealer’s Diary (Artnet.com)