Conference Report: Paris and Berlin, October 2016

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All the Beauty of the World, Berlin, October 13-15, 2016

As the title indicated, this conference gathered together researchers working on many different areas and covering collecting practices from the late 17th to the early 20th centuries. The aim was to explore the different ways markets developed for non-European works of art, how these works of art were given value in the European markets and to a lesser extent because less-well document, how local markets developed in view of European demand. The papers developed such questions as to how value was created, the hierarchies and mechanisms of value-creation, the idea of informal as opposed to formal markets, the roles of dealers and merchants and the mechanisms of the market. With such a variety of topics and case studies, the conference built an awareness of this important area of the art market in not only the beauties but also the cultures of the world.

For abstracts of the papers click here

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The Art Market, Agents and Collectors, 18-19 October, 2016

This two-day conference in Paris was the second half of a conference organised by the Seminar for Collecting and Display that explored the many varying roles of the agent- from merchant, artist, dilettanti, art critic and even dealer. The case studies placed the role of the agent as a part of the market not usually seen in auction house sales or dealers catalogues. Drawing on letters and account books, the speakers examined how agents supplied collectors with works of art, but also how they came increasingly to shape the collection, sometimes forming the taste of the collector, sometimes adapting to their demands. As such, it seemed that networks, friendships and sometimes chance encounters were hugely important, but often so was the character and entrepreneurship of the agent.

For abstracts of the papers click here

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