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How to Invest in Your First Works of Art: A Guide for the New Collector

How to Invest in Your First Works of Art: A Guide for the New Collector

by John Carlin, Patrick McDonnell (Illustrator)

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Library Journal - Library Journal
Although these titles sound similar, each has a different emphasis and a different level of coverage. Bamberger, an art columnist, fills his book with detailed advice on everything from deciding what you like to reselling your purchases, including comparison shopping, determining a fair price, negotiating with dealers, and legal arrangements. He is particularly strong on how to research potential purchases, adding appendixes of relevant art periodicals, reference sources, major auction houses, and associations. Although he appears to be aiming his remarks at those who are willing to spend a lot of money, his advice would be useful to anyone wanting a thorough background in the art market. Of these three titles, Bamberger offers the most for your (paperback) money; buy this if you only need or can only afford one. Carlin, an art critic and a lawyer, does not go into as much detail as Bamberger, but he does include brief information on what the new collector should look for in different media (prints, paintings, drawings, etc.), with an emphasis on contemporary art by living artists. Although Carlin is quite entertaining and readable (and illustrated with great cartoons by Patrick McDonnell), most collectors will need quite a bit more information than he can convey in 100 pages. This volume would, however, be a good acquisition for the personal library of the novice collector. The Wennigers are gallery owners, and they focus on prints. They are strong on the basics of printmaking and types of prints and print reproductions (interesting photographs illustrate these sections). They also expertly discuss care and display of prints. However, their work suffers from repetition and some lack of organization. The pages are also dotted with boxes proclaiming ``Secret:'' followed by statements that could better have been incorporated into the text; this approach seems odd for authors trying to demystify the art market and is quite irritating. Nevertheless, the book's appeal to the less affluent collector makes it a reasonable purchase for public libraries.-- Patricia R. Hausman, Coll. of William & Mary Lib., Williams burg, Va.

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Yarrow Press
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