The Why: The Art Market, in general, and Auction Houses, more specifically, go a long way in shaping the public’s perception of artists. However, it is often difficult to recognize the ways in which they accomplish this. We know, of course, that their goal is to obtain the highest price but they are skilled at ensuring they approach each sale uniquely to give themselves credibility and maximum profit.
The What: You will choose 2 recent auction moments from major houses and compare the ways in which they position each artist in their online information. This should include releases that come out before and after the sale and could extend to wider press coverage as well. How does their language differ between the 2 artists? Is there a sense they are tailoring their lots to certain buyers? What are they using to their advantage?