An Auction of New Chinese Art Leaves Disjointed Noses in Its Wake

The New York Times reports on a scandal in which whose work was recently auctioned off at Sotheby’s say they were cheated by Western investors:

Those artists and curators say that as the collection was being formed, they were duped into thinking that a rich Westerner was putting together a permanent collection and would eventually donate some of the works to leading museums.

Instead, they say, the buyers were a group of investors who quickly cashed in by selling the works last August to the Manhattan dealer William Acquavella, who is in turn selling them through Sotheby’s. (The second half of the collection is to be auctioned this fall in New York.)

Some of the artists say they sold works in the Estella Collection at a discount in the belief that the collection would gain long-term renown and help enhance their reputations.

May 7, 2008, 9:18 PM
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