Bibliographical references strongly help increase the value of a piece of furniture, which explains why they appear almost every time in the most prestigious auction houses’ design catalogs.
The collector acquires a piece of furniture that is a witness of the past, behind which there are numerous stories from many different eras; something with irreplaceable, and fascinating historical value. The reproduction of each of these objects on to a real hard copy catalog also depicts the greatness of its era.
As a result, a work of art has, without a doubt, a lot more value when it is documented. Here is a solid example:
On April 6th, 2016, MILLON decided to put up a desk at auction, presented as one of French designer Jacques Adnet’s pieces of furniture. (Exhibit #1)
Well aware that this desk was being falsely assigned to Jacques Adnet, the PATROL reached out to MILLON in order to give Rene Drouet the credit he deserves. The very desk is in fact drawn in an issue of Mobilier et Décoration from December 1947 (Exhibit #2).
Since a drawing is by definition less precise than a photograph, the PATROL decided to compare the chair represented in this drawing, to a chair depicted in an article published in the May 1938 edition of Art et Décoration. (Exhibit #3) The attribution of this desk (and chair) drawn, undeniably goes to Rene Drouet, and therefore supports the PATROL’s claim.
Once the attribution error was fixed online, and aloud the day of the sale, the desk auctioned for $14,500. (Exhibit #4).
Less than three months later, the same exact desk is presented in MILLON’s June 24th, 2016 auction sale, but this time assigned to the correct designer... and documented. Therefore, the PATROL insists on thanking Patrick Fourtain, the Art Deco expert for this auction, for trusting DOCANTIC in order to correctly document the desk, and for giving it the value it deserves. Rene Drouet’s desk sold for $21,200 (Exhibit #5).
In three months, the value of Rene Drouet’s desk augmented by 46%. A return on investment that makes Madoff look like a small-player!
So how do we explain such an increase in value? The “Brexit”? Inflation? The Panama Papers? No! The cause of this success is four discreet, yet extremely important words: “Bibliographie : Mobilier et Décoration” intelligently indicated on the catalog by the expert of MILLON’s June 24th, 2016 auction.
The documentation is yet one more piece of evidence for art authentication and artist attribution, and brings more value to the piece of art. The winning prize of a successful sale. This is precisely what DOCANTIC is for.
Highfive to MILLON and his expert in Art Deco.
Book ’em! The auction house or the art dealer provided little or no corroborating evidence in the form of documentation for this item.
Time Off! The expert made a significant mistake on this item. His attributed period came in way off. No early parole!
Missing persons alert! The auction house or the art dealer failed to uncover and identify the artist for this item.
Identity theft! They’re guilty of the worst crime of all: mislabeling the artist with another alias. And Picasso painted the Mona Lisa, right?!
The obsessive, nitpicky and no-holds-barred investigative team at DOCANTIC maintains an unparalleled database of original documentation for 20th Century, Art Nouveau, and Art Deco & Design furniture and works of art.
At DOCANTIC we believe that designers deserve proper identification for each work they have created, and that any art lover should confidently pay the right price for his or her purchase. We see the art world filled with both talented artists and con artist and, therefore, also riddled with innumerable attribution errors and outrageous pricing mistakes. By supplying authentic period photographs, DOCANTIC catches and apprehends the undervaluation (or overvaluation) of furniture and works of art. That’s our mission. We stop errors dead in their tracks. We serve and protect 20th Century furniture’s reputation.
Headquartered in Los Angeles, DOCANTIC sets the bar for the identification of 20th Century furniture, and shares with every art lover the information that has been kept under wraps by a handful of experts for far too long!