The Financial Times likes Old Master Drawings for value:
[I]t is, perhaps, the continued affordability of the majority of OMDs that makes them so appealing – small works by major names can often be obtained for relatively modest sums (a Tiepolo hand study in this sale is estimated at just $10,000-$15,000), while sketches in typical media such as pen and ink and red and black chalk by lesser artists are regularly available in the low hundreds.
Sotheby’s is now the only international auction house to hold sales dedicated to Old Master drawings (others combine them with paintings) and has, over the years, sold some of the most important single-owner collections, including those of Lord Ellesmere, Tobias Christ and the British Rail pension fund. Leading this auction is an ink, wash and chalk study of a merchant ship by Canaletto that could fetch up to $300,000, while a superb chalk drawing of the head of a bearded man by Giovanni Sogliani ($80,000-$120,000) comes complete with a second drawing on the reverse showing the Madonna and child. In addition to his hand study mentioned above, Tiepolo’s preparatory drawing for an altarpiece entitled “The Martyrdom of St Sebastian” is on offer at $140,000-$180,000, while a pair of masterly sketches of a sleeping woman on the same five-inch by eight-inch piece of paper are attributed to Rembrandt. They could be on your wall for $15,000-$20,000.
Sale of the Week: Modest Masters (Financial Times)