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The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art Paperback – 18 Mar 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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  • The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art
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  • Breakfast at Sotheby's: An A-Z of the Art World
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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Aurum Press (18 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845134079
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845134075
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.7 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 103,886 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

'If you read no other book about art in your life, read the one that's gripped me like a thriller for the past two days.’ – Richard Morisson



‘This enthralling, revelation-rich trip through the “money game” of the art market brings an economist’s eye – and a dry, sceptical wit- to its absurdities.’



‘Don Thompson is an entertaining sceptic when it comes to contemporary art…a much-needed attempt to get to grips with the mysteries of the art market…Thompson’s knowledge of markets and law is a convincing and informative read.’



'If you read no other book about art in your life, read the one that's gripped me like a thriller for the past two days.’ – Richard Morisson

‘ This enthralling, revelation-rich trip through the “ money game” of the art market brings an economist’ s eye – and a dry, sceptical wit- to its absurdities.’

'Intriguing and readable'

‘ Don Thompson is an entertaining sceptic when it comes to contemporary art… a much-needed attempt to get to grips with the mysteries of the art market… Thompson’ s knowledge of markets and law is a convincing and informative read.’

Synopsis

Why would a very smart New York investment banker pay twelve million dollars for the decaying, stuffed carcass of a shark? By what alchemy does Jackson Pollock's drip painting No.5 "1948" sell for $140 million? And why does a leather jacket with silver chain attached, tossed in a corner and titled 'No One Ever Leaves', bring $690,000 at a 2007 Sotheby's auction? "The Twelve Million Dollar Stuffed Shark" is the first book to look at the economics of the modern art world and the marketing strategies which power the market to produce such astronomical prices.Don Thompson talks to auction houses, dealers, and collectors to find out the source of Charles Saatchi's Midas touch, and how far a gallery like White Cube has contributed to Damien Hirst becoming the highest-earning artist in the world. He unravels the Byzantine sale procedures by which the top auction houses maintain both premium prices for what they sell and their own pre-eminence, but also shows us a market whose most spectacular excesses are driven just as often by far simpler human urges like lust and self-aggrandizement.

It is a world in which brand is all-important, and which in many ways has most in common with the branded world of luxury fashion. The result is a fascinating, shrewd and highly readable insight into a modern-day phenomenon.This book presents the Tipping Point or Freakonomics for the art world. It will appeal to anyone interested in art, but also for anyone who has wondered 'yes, but, is it art?' This is the first book to look at the economics and marketing strategies which power the contemporary art market. It features fascinating behind the scenes look at what makes or breaks an artist and the branding which drives this lucrative market. It contains exclusive interviews with artists, collectors, auctioneers and exhibitors. The author is an economist professor specializing in art and auctions.

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34 customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

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