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Question
I recently inherited my father's art collection in Scottsdale, Arizona. I live in
Baltimore. There are some very valuable pieces such as two signed and
numbered Chagall lithographs. I am interested in selling the entire collection
but don't know if it is  1. better to wait until the market is better  and ship
home everything  now 2. divide the collection and sell some things in
Arizona, shipping the more valuable ones home to wait for the right price  3.
sell through dealers or auction houses or ebay

Answer
Dear Michele,

The first thing you need to do is inventory the work. All information about the art such as artist, title, size, medium (if known), hand signed vs. unsigned, and any edition numbers. If you have certificates on the art, keep them together until time to sell the art. You will also want to take photographs of the art, front and back. My suggestion is you have the entire collection shipped to you in Baltimore. If you decide to sell at auction, the major houses are closer to you in New York.

Once you have a list, you may want to send the list to at least 3 major auction houses, such as Sothebys and Christies, and get an estimate of value of the work. They will evaluate each item independently, but if you decide to have them carry the entire collection, you should negotiate a lower sellerís commission. The auction houses will not usually carry work that estimates less than $2000. You are not bound by their evaluations.

As with the entire economy, art sales are down internationally. The exception is the higher level investment art. It is difficult for me to give you an opinion on sell or hold without knowing what you have in the collection.

If you decide not to use an auction house, there are other ways to sell art on the secondary market. If you want to email me with additional questions, I will give you resources and options based on the work. Dolly12@aol.com.

I hope this information is helpful.

Best regards,
Dolly  

Fine Art

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Dolly D Headley

Expertise

I can assist with identification, acquisition, sell representation, and care of fine art prints and original paintings. Some of my artist specialties include Henri Toulouse Lautrec, California Artists, and the Modern Masters. I can also assist with information on getting professional appraisals and authentication.

Experience

Dolly D. Headley, owner of Headley Fine Art, LLC, has provided consultative art services to retail gallery clients in Sausalito, CA, and at www.headleyfineart.com since 1998. With over 14 years experience as a Senior Art Consultant, Gallery Director, and an extensive art research library; Ms. Headley has provided hundreds of people with her high quality personalized consultation services and solid guarantee of satisfaction. Dolly is a volunteer at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Organizations
Member of the Association of Online Appraisers.

Publications
The Fine Art Collectors News

Education/Credentials
Bachelor of Science; Self taught with thousands of hours research and retail gallery consulting. Personalized mentorship from various experts in the industry.

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