To fight speculators Christie’s auction house has developed a list of purchase conditions.
In February 2020, a painting by Ghanaian-born artist Amoako Boafo was sold at the auction house of Phillips in London for $ 881.4 thousand – more than 10 times higher than the estimate and more than 3000% more than the current owner paid for it a year earlier. The artist did not receive a cent from this deal. High performance in the secondary market like this can be detrimental to an up-and-coming talent that has not yet had a chance to shape up or experiment. In other words, auction houses are not very pleasant places for new creators, especially those who quickly become popular.
However, 22 novice or non-peaked author careers have registered to attend the Christie’s Say It Loud (I’m Black and Proud) curated exhibition-sale dedicated to promoting black art. The auction house, along with exhibition curator Destiny Ross-Sutton, says they have gone even further to discourage buyers from reselling the work for a quick profit. Each artist will receive 100% of the proceeds from the sale of his works, and each buyer must sign a special contract with a whole list of conditions.
- So, they must agree not to resell the work at auctions for at least five years.
- And if they still want to sell what they bought, they must give the author of the work the right of the first redemption.
- If they sell the work to someone else, they must return 15% of the profits to the artist.
Ross-Sutton says these conditions are the result of long conversations with artists and others about the best way to support their careers. The contract can also serve as a litmus test of the buyer’s motivation. While Ross-Sutton had doubts about how people would react to contract restrictions, she says they mostly reacted greedily. This is encouraging, and she suggests that people will not stop answering after they get a contract.
To date, about 75-80% of the exhibition has been sold to collectors and art institutions, with prices ranging from $ 475 for limited prints by Houston-based artist Cary Fagan to $ 43,000 for two large works by South African artist Nelson Makamo. Collins Obijiaku, Harry Turner, Ishak Ismail, Juvon Aderemi, Alexis McGrigg, Amani Lewis, and Anyway Oluwaseyi are estimated to be worth around $ 6,000 – $ 8,000. Yoyo Lander’s painting from Los Angeles is estimated at $ 15 thousand. A large-scale composition by South African author Wonder Bule Mbambo is estimated at $ 17,000.
Say It Loud (I’m Black and Proud) sales exhibition will run on Christie’s website until August 18, 2020.