Monthly Archives: March 2018

Pottery Auction

The first time I went to a pottery auction with my dad I was floored.  We walked into the exhibit and there I saw for the first time a glimpse of the fine art niche.  I was walking by vases after vase.  Each one of them with their own unique shape, color, design, and finish.  But while my dad appreciated the vases themselves and the craftsmanship then creator demonstrated while creating them. I began to notice the price tags.  Wow, were they much higher than I ever would have imagined.

I was used to vases that cost hundreds of dollars, but thousands or even tens of thousands, that was new to me.  As we walked the floor of the exhibit in preparation for the auction I had one mission.  Find the most expensive price tag and try to learn why.  As I continued my search, the excitement i felt each time I saw a new higher price, $549, $699, $1,200 and then suddenly there it was.  I saw my first vase that was priced over $10,000.  This particular vase was priced at $17,995.  I could not believe it.  At the time my allowance was like $20 per month.  So as far as I was concerned, it was like making a million dollars.  I asked my dad why it cost so much and he smiled.  I did not really get it.  I asked again and he blushed a little bit and then came up with this goofy smile and said.  “It is that expensive because of the artist.  He is famous and people pay a lot of money for his work.”

My next thought was to meet this artist and find out more about him or her.  I went back to the display and looked at what I somehow missed the first time around when i was only focused on the price tag.  The artist was my dad :).  It was one of those moment where you are both proud and shocked all at the same time.  My dad was selling individual vases for thousands upon thousands of dollars.  It was crazy.  It was this moment that I wanted to learn not the creation portion or art, but the business side.  And was I blessed, because my dad was a great teacher on art business and I was eager to learn.

On the car drive back I must have asked my dad dozens of questions.  At first I could tell he was excited.  He had tried for years to share his passion for art with me but until today I had remained uninterested.  Now as a teen ager money had become of great interest to me.  I wanted to have cash in my pocket so i could hang out with my friends and buy things I wanted without having to always ask my parents.  I was looking for a job but ideally wanted a way to learn an industry and make more than just minimum wage working at some fast food restaurant somewhere.  This was it.  With my own dad as the teacher and me as the ever willing student.