Top Five Most Expensive Photographs Ever Sold
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Gregstx
Registered: Dec 07, 2010
Total Posts: 605
Country: United States

This reminds me of a scene from the movie "Mona Lisa Smile". The art teacher (Julia Roberts) shows a photograph of her mother to her elitist art students. The students dismiss it merely as a nice snap shot. Then she says "What if I told you it was taken by Ansel Adams?"



GoGo
Registered: Apr 18, 2006
Total Posts: 792
Country: United States

Gregstx wrote:
This reminds me of a scene from the movie "Mona Lisa Smile". The art teacher (Julia Roberts) shows a photograph of her mother to her elitist art students. The students dismiss it merely as a nice snap shot. Then she says "What if I told you it was taken by Ansel Adams?"


This is why I love seeing movies as much as I love making still images.



ericevans
Registered: Oct 12, 2003
Total Posts: 1950
Country: United States

Micky Bill wrote:
I really like the 99 cent store and the Steichen but I still don't quite get cindy sherman.

I don't get people that pay that much for her work.



mshi
Registered: Dec 13, 2010
Total Posts: 3586
Country: United States

ericevans wrote:
Micky Bill wrote:
I really like the 99 cent store and the Steichen but I still don't quite get cindy sherman.

I don't get people that pay that much for her work.


Because those who got it want to accumulate her work.



15Bit
Registered: Jan 27, 2008
Total Posts: 3881
Country: Norway

It's always been clear that you can't separate art, artist and value. Art is always judged within the context of the artist - individual works are regarded as part of the wider portfolio of the artist. This can contribute to both monetary as well as "artistic" value (an individual piece may not stand well individually, but be important or significant with respect to the wider portfolio of the artist). This does sort of annoy me, as it means that obvious tat can have inappropriate value attached to it - say Andy Warhol sneezed on a piece of canvas and tried to sell it: Subtle meanings and social commentaries would be attached and the piece would be worth more than most of us earn in a year, despite just being a sneeze on a canvas. But that is how it is - people do strive to find meaning where there maybe none.

As for the "artistic" value of these photos here, i would like to see them in person and displayed as the photographer intended before judging. The visual impact of a 7ft print cannot be in any way well represented on a 24 inch computer screen, so it is unfair to judge it that way. The monetary value is obviously divorced from any kind of reality that we understand, but if people are willing to pay that much then that is what they are worth.



Game Changer
Registered: Feb 12, 2011
Total Posts: 176
Country: United States

Can I count the huge Copyright settlement I got for one image



gheller
Registered: Apr 30, 2002
Total Posts: 5908
Country: United States

15Bit wrote:
The visual impact of a 7ft print cannot be in any way well represented on a 24 inch computer screen, so it is unfair to judge it that way.



I don't care if you print that first one (or especially the tight grocery shelf one) 7 ft or 7 miles. I am laughing at the people that spent that kinda money on this to say they have a "(insert artist's name)" hanging on their wall.

greg



BenV
Registered: Jan 01, 2008
Total Posts: 8158
Country: United States

gheller wrote:
15Bit wrote:
The visual impact of a 7ft print cannot be in any way well represented on a 24 inch computer screen, so it is unfair to judge it that way.



I don't care if you print that first one (or especially the tight grocery shelf one) 7 ft or 7 miles. I am laughing at the people that spent that kinda money on this to say they have a "(insert artist's name)" hanging on their wall.

greg


My thoughts exactly, but to each their own I guess. Even if I had the money to waste, I wouldn't spend it on that.



chez
Registered: Nov 26, 2003
Total Posts: 8172
Country: Canada

gheller wrote:
15Bit wrote:
The visual impact of a 7ft print cannot be in any way well represented on a 24 inch computer screen, so it is unfair to judge it that way.



I don't care if you print that first one (or especially the tight grocery shelf one) 7 ft or 7 miles. I am laughing at the people that spent that kinda money on this to say they have a "(insert artist's name)" hanging on their wall.

greg


Yep...but they might keep it for 5 years and sell it for double what they bought it for. People with that kind of money know how to make money. That is what separates them from us. We go to work every day to put food on our tables. These people spend their days looking for investments.

Laugh at them all you want...but I bet they are the ones who in the end are laughing all the way to the bank while you get into you 8 year old chevy and drive off to work.



gheller
Registered: Apr 30, 2002
Total Posts: 5908
Country: United States

I will qualify thoughts by saying that if it is *solely* for investment purposes, more power too them.

I was referring to those who pay an ungodly amount of money for this work for the sake of saying the own one (mostly to brag and feed their egos)

greg



Cphoto1954
Registered: Dec 17, 2008
Total Posts: 670
Country: United States

In my opinion the Edward Steichen is the ONLY one of value.



camerausername
Registered: May 15, 2010
Total Posts: 245
Country: United States

I really like #1. It is simple with a pleasing palette and strong repetition. #3 finds order in the chaos of all those products while commenting on consumerism. Looking at those images individually, it's easy to write them off as snapshots, but you have to look at Gursky's full body of work to appreciate what he is doing.



cmillc22
Registered: Mar 07, 2008
Total Posts: 837
Country: United States

wow, so there is still hope for me



Javier Munoz
Registered: Nov 10, 2007
Total Posts: 536
Country: United States

Has anybody ever heard of mastering composition?

From the comments I am reading here it appears as if anybody can draw an incredibly complicated balance of vertical and horizontal lines and colors in a 99 cents store



Photobufff
Registered: Oct 20, 2012
Total Posts: 14
Country: Afghanistan

My mom says my photos are priceless



drofnad
Registered: Nov 18, 2008
Total Posts: 143
Country: United States

15Bit wrote:
It's always been clear that you can't separate art, artist and value. Art is always judged within the context of the artist - individual works are regarded as part of the wider portfolio of the artist. This can contribute to both monetary as well as "artistic" value (an individual piece may not stand well individually, but be important or significant with respect to the wider portfolio of the artist). This does sort of annoy me, as it means that obvious tat can have inappropriate value attached to it - say Andy Warhol sneezed on a piece of canvas and tried to sell it: Subtle meanings and social commentaries would be attached and the piece would be worth more than most of us earn in a year, despite just being a sneeze on a canvas. But that is how it is - people do strive to find meaning where there maybe none.

...


Well put.
I, too, find these particular photos either non-impressive or worse; but that goes for much "art", too. Consider those modern-art squares of (nearly) pure black : they're in museums, which might have underground halls painted black by unnamed contractors, yet who'd go just put a frame up against such a wall, slap on an artist label with some clever title ("Untitled #19" scales well :-), and see that as an artistic equal?!

Among a local photo show's prints that I was appalled by are these by Jordan Swartz:
[url=http://]www.washingtoncitypaper.com/articles/41305/photo-11-at-artisphere-reviewed-a-show-about-nothingand-everything#comment-36914
[/url]
and esp. this
[url=http://]www.artisphere.com/calendar/event-details/Visual-Arts/Photo-2011.aspx
[/url]
(the displayed copy had a blond wood frame that in fact intruded over the image, hiding a lamp head!).
(His 3rd of a trio was a soft-focus, night shot of evergreens silhouette, akin to the Steichen one shown above (which, frankly, I could see being used as an example of things gone wrong in low-light photography).)

Huh? ("WTF?")

Now, on the positive-experience side, I recently saw (twice, and might return again) an exhibit of Andrew Moore's "Detroit Revisited" --huge prints (many 6x5' roughly). These also look good, though, in the book of the same title (with more images ($50ish)) --if ya like this sort of thing.

As for Gursky's compositional skill arranging those colors & lines : I think that far-lower-paid stock clerks should get much of the credit for that, and otherwise, I don't find that all so impressive. I do like the image of this consumerism, mind you; I just really don't see it as of such grand value to be so celebrated, let alone super-priced. Ditto for the riverside Gursky : nice lines and textures, balance, etc., ; but not THAT good!

It would be fun and I think edifying to do some "taste testing" of the great & not-so-great art works without names attached, or with bogus names attached --to see if mere, typographical "Gursky" brought out reactions not otherwise seen when presented as "Ethel Johnson", and so on.

And I couldn't help but think that someone was having a good laugh (from Above) on seeing the museum showing of bizarre imagery with even more bizarre titles, in a Joan Miro exhibit --to wit: "Woman Stabbed by the Sun Reciting Rocket Poems In The Geometrical Shapes Of The Musical Bat Spittle Fight Of The Sea,"


-drofnad



JohnJ
Registered: Jul 09, 2005
Total Posts: 2007
Country: Australia

drofnad wrote:
...It would be fun and I think edifying to do some "taste testing" of the great & not-so-great art works without names attached, or with bogus names attached ...


I think you're missing the point that the value in the work has more to do with WHO actually did it, the scarcity of the work (ie original prints vs copies or later re-prints) etc. 'Who' did it is important because of what they actually brought to the art world that didn't exist before them. By way of example, I see paintings in the style of Jeffrey Smart (an Australian painter) that are worth virtually nothing yet the original works of Smart are worth quite a lot, generally in the high 6 figures.



Richard Booth
Registered: Oct 02, 2003
Total Posts: 1261
Country: United States

I hope this is some kind of a joke based on the Mayan doomsday predictions . . . or I lack sophistication and good taste. If not, many people on these forums should be multi millionaires many times over.

Richard



Kolor-Pikker
Registered: Aug 05, 2009
Total Posts: 342
Country: Russia

Anything made by Steichen is of great value, especially to photographic history, for breaking it out of the "straight photography" phase. The others I'm completely indifferent to.



hugodrax
Registered: Dec 07, 2003
Total Posts: 894
Country: United States

ericevans wrote:
Micky Bill wrote:
I really like the 99 cent store and the Steichen but I still don't quite get cindy sherman.

I don't get people that pay that much for her work.



A lot of people do not get it but there is a reason certain types of work by certain types of "Vetted" artists sell for large currency values. This kind of Art is an alternative currency used by ultra high net worth individuals who need to transfer/transport currency from one place/person to the other.

There are many reasons why they would use such Art as an alternative currency VS just doing a wire transfer of cash from one individual to another etc.. but it would be beyond the scope of this discussion.



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