Catawiki 'The place to be' for professionals & collectors

Small local auction houses had their day a long time ago

This film is yet another proof that internationally the online auction house Catawiki is becoming 'The place to be' for serious (professional) buyers, sellers and private collectors of special international (applied) art and collectables.

BBC programs like 'Flog it' , 'Put your money where your mouth is', 'Bargain hunt' and the 'Antiques road trip' (not to be confused with the antiques road show) on the other hand, show again and again that small local auction houses had their day a long time ago, at least for sellers. They can't attract the right buyers and the right quantity of buyers (not even online). My personal opinion is that these kind of TV programs are misleading, not only for the viewers, but also for the people who bring their objects into auction.

The BBC and the renowned experts on the program unfortunatly paint an old-fashioned and outdated picture as if small local auction houses are the best place to sell their precious goods. But in the end the winners are not the people whose objects were auctioned. The mostly disappointing, embarrassing auction results say enough. The potential doesn't lie in the small auction houses where the buyers are in most cases pensioners or older buyers but on the vibrant internet with a much wider age range and a much broader international public. And there is where Catawiki has stepped in. Catawiki has blown new life in the downward spiraling antiques trade for instance. Research also shows that it is becoming more popular to buy art and design online.

The diminishing role of small auction houses is not only visible in Britain. This also applies to countries like The Netherlands where, as an art dealer I have been visiting quite a few local auction houses for many years.Time and again I have seen 'high end' objects go for very low prices. The problem with most of these smaller auction houses is, that they don't have the time or the passion and even sometimes the expertise to invest in their auction lots and their costumers. Most of these local auction houses thrive on a fast turnover; investing in a good lot description or in quality photos is mostly secondary. One can imagine that this way of handling auction lots is very detrimental for their costumers. But there are exceptions to the rule of course.

Where to buy and where to sell

At least the result is that these local auction houses are one of the best places to find great bargains. Of course garage sales and flea markets are another alternative but logically the quality at these venues varies. Finding something of real value there is like searching for a needle in a haystack.

For me as an art dealer and my associates Catawiki is one of 'the best places to be' to market our company 'Decaders' and to buy and sell most of our objects. Catawiki does have experienced and specialized auction masters under their roof and are very active in promoting their auction objects internationally, on social media for instance. This is the great strength and asset of Catawiki. A staggering 14 million potential international buyers (and growing) visit Catawiki each month.

And because , as a Catawiki user, one has control over the quality of the photos and the lot description, one is assured that auction lots can reach a good auction result. Because of your own trustworthy and correct lot descriptions and well made photo's buyers can be confident, that what they see is what they get.

Knowledge is power

Knowledge is power' , the saying goes, and with some justification. Of course auctioning is also teamwork between you as a costumer and the Catawiki auction master. But do try to rely mostly on your own knowledge and research, secondly on the knowledge of the auction master. Obviously the more you yourself invest in obtaining knowledge in your field and of your objects the better you can buy in your objects; the better your lots and lot descriptions will become. Resulting in a faster acceptance of your lots by the Catawiki auction masters. Getting a third party paid valuation should be your last resort. In that case online services like 'Art price' and 'Value my stuff' are a great help.

One of the most interesting but costly resources is the Oxford Art Online Benizit Dictionary of artists. A fantastic database of Artists. Benezit’s distinguishing features include its entries on obscure artists, historic auction records, and over 11,000 images of artists’ signatures, monograms, and stamps of sale. Benezit is continually updated to reflect new scholarship, with a special focus on contemporary artists with current or recent exhibitions.

Invest in the art of photography

Your photos are the gateway to Catawiki auction succes. The better you understand how to make impressive, well lit photos with a great composition, the better you will sell. Learn from professionals and look at how renowned auction houses like Sotheby's and Christies photograph their lots. If possible invest in photographic studio gear like studio flashes, a softbox & backgrounds so you don't have to rely on daylight alone and have more control. Also software like photoshop can bring your photos to the next level.

Catawiki auctions in a growing market

Thanks to Catawiki our returning costumers not only come from Western and Eastern Europe but also more and more from countries like the USA, Canada, China, Taiwan, Japan and more. Upcoming Catawiki markets are The UK, North America, Scandinavia , Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean and the far-East. Understandably there is great potential here for international dealers in art, antiques, design and collectables in general.

Catawiki has proved that it is here to stay and that it cares for its costumers. So do give it a shot. It will be worth your while.


      04-07-2017 11:36     Reacties ( 0 )
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