Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In Indianapolis Art and Auction News: Two Updates

Inaugural Indianapolis Contemporary: Art & Design Auction

A preview/reception will take place on Thursday, June 24th from 5 to 8 pm.

Auction to take place Friday, June 25th at 6 pm

Dan Ripley’s Antique Helper

2764 East 55th Place, Indianapolis, IN 46220


Included in the auction are artworks by Anila Agha, Leslie Baker, John Berry, Amy Falstrom, James Wille Faust, Linda Adele Goodine, Scott Grow, Flounder Lee, Craig McCormick, Tyler Meuninck, Emma Overman, Anne Roecklein, DeAnne Roth, G.K. Rowe, Artur Silva, Betsy Stirratt, Jason Zickler and many others. Contemporary design and studio furniture offered by Nick Allman, Cory Robinson, Ted Ross and others.

More info and online catalog at: http://www.antiquehelper.com/

WFYI is looking for donations of Artwork for the Fourth Annual Online Auction.
In years past the Auction has included skillful but uninspired pieces of art: that changes this year with an open call to all readers of this blog.

WFYI knows that central Indiana’s Art scene isn’t “something in the making” or “almost there” but incredibly vibrant & creative. Your work can help: All proceeds from the auction go directly to WFYI’s annual operations budget – that keeps the programs you listen to every day on the radio, shows you catch on the weekends on TV, and WFYI’s commitment to continued learning going strong.

All donations are tax deductable for their fair market value. Once donated, WFYI owns the work. If not bid upon or won during the auction may hang on the walls of our building at 1630 N Meridian. That makes it win/win: your piece makes money for WFYI or it hangs where Big Bird and Charlie Rose are broadcast.

We’re accepting whatever you can throw at us. Large scale prints to tiny paintings, a set of hand-thrown mugs to found object assemblages, conceptual video to simple photography. And not to censor, but since images of your work will be accessible to all ages we will have to refuse questionable content.

The realm of what can benefit WFYI is endless but the time line is not: gifts should be submitted by July 31st for maximum exposure to our tens of thousands of members.
Public Broadcasting is for the people, so do your part by giving some art.

To donate contact Ben Traub at (317) 614-0399, visit www.wfyi.org/auction for more information, or write an email to auction@wfyi.org today!

Thank you in advance for your kind consideration and support of WFYI Public Broadcasting.

26 Responses to “In Indianapolis Art and Auction News: Two Updates”

Liriodendron said...
June 22, 2010 at 7:11 PM

Hmmmm.....I was eyeballing the art and design catalog earlier this week.....I thought it would be interesting to go to see what (if anything) was hot.

Anonymous said...
June 22, 2010 at 7:15 PM

by hot do you mean stolen?

Liriodendron said...
June 22, 2010 at 7:17 PM


Jimmy said...
June 23, 2010 at 11:01 AM

Looking forward to the auction.

Anonymous said...
June 26, 2010 at 9:22 AM

The reserves were too high, left halfway through.

Anonymous said...
June 26, 2010 at 8:41 PM

Anonymous wanted to buy low.
It's good that artist can put reserves on there work to be auctioned.
It's a hard time for artist they should never sell there
art to cheap, but sadly they do.

Anonymous said...
June 26, 2010 at 9:19 PM

Just checked out the "results" online...

Didn't think this bad idea was going to work. It was a dangerous risk for working artists to put pieces into this auction. I guess the market has spoken, and it it isn't pretty.

Anonymous said...
June 28, 2010 at 10:49 AM

I question the comment that the results of this auction effort reflect "the market" having "spoken".
The turn out in attendees was dismal and does anyone really have any clue who else "attended" online? Whatever..........I think its a reflection of the low sites of this community. The work required to be an arts destination cannot be carried by only a handful in the community. And it won't get there with snappy marketing plans and slogans.

In response to Anon. above that left because the "reserves were too high"......and to Anon. that thought it was a "bad idea": It is exactly your Want-Something-For-Nothing ....and your I-Knew-It-Wouldn't-Work.... mentality that perpetuates the dismal art scene in this town.

Why should artists work cheap? Aside from the overblown myth of William Faust, I thought the reserves were very decent and respectable to the artists.

Anonymous said...
June 28, 2010 at 2:45 PM

looked more like a pawn shop to me.
antique dealers should take their heads out of their ass and realize that contemporary art is not for them. nice try on the organizers part howeves, but it was not a good venue.

Anonymous said...
June 28, 2010 at 3:03 PM

Bottom line is that this event was very well publicized and the results were terrible.

When looking at the results online, it is obvious to a collector that the art offered in most cases was not worth the auction estimate or else there would have been interest and more pieces would have sold.

Anonymous said...
June 28, 2010 at 4:15 PM

there's a difference between wanting something for nothing as a buy and giving something for nothing as an artist. buyers dont have to buy, artists dont have to participate. their auction happened regardless, that doesnt say anything about the work.

Anonymous said...
June 29, 2010 at 8:18 AM

I agree with the comment that the auction house looked like a pawn shop....not the right venue for this contemporary art auction. Propping pieces on display cases or hanging too high salon style didn't look good. Maybe next time find a temporary rental, or better - temp. DONATED space ....... something like old Dolphin Papers space at the Murphy? Hang at gallery level and use easels.

Anonymous said...
June 29, 2010 at 8:21 AM

Also, the lighting was not good for art.

Anonymous said...
June 29, 2010 at 11:51 AM

a lot of critisism...
if there was support for the arts,
end of discussion.

Anonymous said...
June 29, 2010 at 11:57 AM

Are you actually ending this discussion?

Who are you?...The boss hog?

Lori said...
June 29, 2010 at 3:58 PM

I thought a lot of the better artists in our community were represented. Given that it was the first time something like this was attempted, I thought the sales (around 10-15% sold) were not too bad.

It seemed like next time a few things might help: a better date (summer is a nightmare for art events), targeted invitations to known collectors (I know a few personally who only heard about it vaguely by word of mouth), making it more of a social event (drinks and social pressure are the secret ingredients of most auction type purchases if you ask me).

I'm constantly impressed that there are a small number of artists who make their whole living selling art, especially in this market in Indiana, which is just a conservative type of place. But I also know there are, in fact, people buying art. As artists, we just haven't really worked that hard to try to make buying art an experience they understand.

Dan Ripley, Owner said...
June 29, 2010 at 6:26 PM

I want to thank the artists who participated in the auction. We received many positive words and much appreciation for our efforts. The venue allowed us to offer works from multiple artists without being too exclusive. I am sure that many potential buyers will someday realize that an opportunity has passed to not only support the local arts and IMA, but to acquire great pieces at generously discounted prices.

Do pawn shops serve free beer and wine? Was "Anonymous" also oblivious to the incredible $200k display of 20th Century International decorative arts in the front gallery?

Mark Ruschman said...
June 30, 2010 at 2:35 PM

I think Dan Ripley, Mindy Taylor Ross and Christopher West should be praised for putting the event on. I was there for the Thursday preview, but could not make the Friday night event. While not a gallery setting, the work was strong, the work was well displayed and easy for a potential buyer to see. In my experience, art auctions are always a tricky thing. More often than not, it's all about whose in the room (buyers)and if they're motivated to buy at that particular time. I will say that local art auctions in the past, often associated with nonprofits and art institutions, have not faired all that well either. Work is sold, but generally at a fraction of the normal retail price. Scarcity of available work is a factor in driving up demand, and in turn, auction prices. Since the work being offered is readily available elsewhere in town, this may have contributed to the lack of sales.

I applaud the effort and hope the motivation to promote the local visual arts scene continues.

Scott Grow said...
June 30, 2010 at 9:53 PM

I have to second Mark's take on the event.

Anonymous said...
July 4, 2010 at 9:08 PM

The work that is available in other locations in town is more than likely at a higher price than the price that could have been paid at the auction... Why this would preclude auction sales I do not understand. Seems to me that the opposite would have been the case.

Scott Grow said...
July 7, 2010 at 10:51 AM

I think there could be a couple of factors at work here. At least in the local buyers eyes.

- Market saturation. With most of the artists included in the auction being from Indy, a number of their supporters either own work by them or know they could purchase a work of theirs easily in the future, with the ability to choose from a much larger body of that artists works.

- Rarity. It is my belief that auctions typically thrive on the rarity of the works being offered and the publics desire to own such a piece. Perhaps it can be said that few artists in town draw such attention to a particular body or series of their work that people would be willing to out bid each other simply to get one.

- Status. Sadly, I think it may also be true that a number of local artists do not yet have the status/name recognition/fame to draw in big bids.

I would guess that most of the artists who participated in the auction (like myself) did so for one to three different reasons. They wanted to support the contemporary art acquisition fund, They wanted to support Christopher and Mindy, and/or they wanted in this slow economy to take a chance to reach outside their normal audience and presentation means to bring in some sort of income. All of these reasons are good enough for me and all in fact were reasons I participated. The downside to this as I have discussed with some other friends is the fear of effecting their current pricing. With most of the works being sold for less than their typical asking price, artists and galleries will have to begin questioning their pricing of such works. I believe most people hope that there would be some bidding wars on a piece that would in turn drive the sale price about that of the estimates or at the very least above the reserve. With little of that having taken place, I can not be sure if ongoing participation would be strong. Of course seeing that a number of buyers were from outside Indy is a good thing as it can be viewed as a platform for exposing some of these artists to a larger audience. Much to think about in the future.

Anonymous said...
July 12, 2010 at 9:18 PM

@Dan Ripley, Owner!!! 20th century decorative art is NOT contemporary art. Clearly "anon" is correct in the view that antique dealers know nothing about contemporary art.
Can I get a witness?
And you possibly a text book published in the last 10 years?

By proximity alone, you might as well be a pawn shop.

Scott Grow said...
July 13, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Wow, there is so much wrong with that statement. I personally do not know Dan but to assume that someone who is interested in or deals in antiques can not possibly be knowledgeable or in tune with the contemporary art world is absolutely absurd. If you everyone that makes the art world work had to actually be an artist or arts professional we all would be dead in the water. Most of the great contemporary art patrons, collectors, donors, etc. work in any of a variety of industries. I know artists who collect antiques. Is this to say that an artist can't possible know anything about antiques simply because they work as a contemporary artist? It should also be reminded that Christopher West and Mindy Ross spearheaded this project, both of which have considerable knowledge of the contemporary art world. While sales may not have been as plentiful or as high that we may have hoped, I do believe more than $20,000 were sold that night. When was the last time in any of the galleries here in Indy sold that amount of work in a single night. Most art venues here would be flabbergasted if they sold that amount of work in one night.

Dan Ripley said...
July 13, 2010 at 3:36 PM

I don't know if the continuation of this discussion is constructive or not. Assuming that it is, I submit this:

From Wikipedia, (for what it is worth)

Contemporary art can be defined variously as art produced at this present point in time or art produced since World War II. The definition of the word contemporary would support the first view, but museums of contemporary art commonly define their collections as consisting of art produced since World War II.

I also submit the question: What is contemporary art when it is no longer contemporary?

The auction market, as Scott says, is in fact driven by rarity and price. I do not know the rarity of the works offered, nor do I know if the prices were reflective of the retail market. I do know that Contemporary Art can thrive at auction. I do know that we can efficiently offer contemporary art with the auction marketing process. I also appreciate the passion surrounding the Indy art scene. I doubt that the critics (haters?) of the process are ultimately detrimental to the future of a local art auction.

Penny Auction Online said...
July 15, 2010 at 5:18 AM

I didn't really get what this is going on here. but feeling something strange!!!!!!!!!

Penny Auction Bid said...
July 29, 2010 at 8:07 AM

Cool I'll think about it.

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