Saturday, February 6, 2010

The 104 Million Dollar "Walking Man"

This past week Sotheby's sold Giacometti's bronze sculpture "Walking Man" at auction for, $104.3 Mill. (foreground above). It was the top price ever paid for a work of art. What I always wonder is, what would the artist's reaction be if they were alive to witness such a phenomenon, would they feel pride or disgust? Giacometti spent a period in his career unable to finish anything. He would carve his plaster pieces with a penknife to the point where he could carry around his sculptures in a cigarette pack. Eventually the whittling reduced them to a poof of dust, gone, nothing. Yea, Giacometti would probably feel a bit of disgust over such an obscene sum.
After the sale writers were speculating that this could be a signal that the art market was bouncing back. No, but "blue chip" artists at auction are and definitely Giacometti, the rest of us will wait for the "trickle down".