On March 2004, the famous auction house SOTHEBY’S sold a glass table by Jean Perzel, but failed to provide the correct creation date. …We fixed this!
At DOCANTIC, we investigate the proper identification of 20th Century furniture, and provide accurate documentation. Here’s an example from our case files!
SOTHEBY'S got pulled over by DOCANTIC PATROL for time violation: Wrong Date!
In a 20th Century Decorative Arts sale on March 11th, 2004, SOTHEBY’S sold a Jean Perzel glass and bronze console table for $6,000 (which included the buyer’s premium). Believe it or not, the table was sold without any references! According to SOTHEBY’S research, the table was created “circa 1930s.” But after probing through the DOCANTIC archive system, our investigative team retrieved the actual date plus a reference to prove it.
DOCANTIC uncovered the reference below concerning the Jean Perzel table, and the date he created it–1954! Technically, a 15- to 25-year difference is a major mistake because that’s a huge gap in the history of 20th Century furniture! No jurisprudence.
One of the largest auction houses in the world, SOTHEBY’S most likely has facilities and experts dedicated to researching the history of furniture pieces. …Or, so we thought. The initial estimate for the Perzel console that sold on March 11th, 2004 came to $6,000-9,000. Yet, the console only sold for $6,000 (including buyer’s premium). That means that the hammer price — the selling price before processing fees are applied — was below the estimate value. No doubt, if SOTHEBY’S had provided the table with at least one reference as accomplice (and the proper date!), this table would have been sold at the higher end of the estimate range. That’s good news for the buyer. But not for the seller!
DOCANTIC patrols the market to make sure that 20th Century furniture and works of art receive proper attribution and accurate documentation, so that collectors may sell and/or purchase works at the correct price. To protect and to serve the art community, that's out job!
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!