Robin Pogrebin writes about the new series on Crackle set in an auction house. Although the show’s creator has a lot of heavy-breathing quotes about art being “so beautiful […] yet there can be so much ugliness behind it,” Pogrebin goes to Christie’s—which has had more than its share of internal political drama of late (and some insiders say it continues to have an operatic milieu)—for a reality check:
“Because of these high prices, it’s seen as a very glamorous place — the drama of auctions, the high spectacle of it,” said Brett Gorvy, Christie’s international head of postwar and contemporary art. “We’ve got $100 million paintings, celebrities in the auction room — a DiCaprio — a cattle call of names, the sense that the art market is a very sexy place, a lot of conniving and innuendo that might be part of this. I’m not surprised it makes for a TV program.”
Mr. Gorvy said the auction world had also become more accessible as the business became more global and those who populate it more recognizable. “The artists themselves have become rock stars,” he said. “Their personalities are very important. A Jeff Koons, a Damien Hirst — all of those people have become more known to the public.” […]
Of course, if these shows really took viewers into the day-to-day life of the auction houses, what they would see would be decidedly less glamorous, insiders say, particularly in the stressful, work-heavy days before big sales.
“People don’t look that great — they’re eating bad food and here until 4 in the morning,” Mr. Gorvy said. “In the room itself, it’s high drama. But you go behind the curtain, and you see everything put together with a lot of sweat and tears.”
TV Turns to the Art World as the Latest Glamorous Setting (The New York Times)