Breakfast at Sotheby's: An A-Z of the Art World

Breakfast at Sotheby's: An A-Z of the Art World

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Breakfast at Sotheby's is a wry, intimate, truly revealing exploration of how art acquires its financial value, from Philip Hook, a senior director at Sotheby's.

When you stand in front of a work of art in an auction room or dealer’s gallery, you ask these two questions followed by others: How much is it worth? How much will it be worth in five or ten years’ time? And what will people think of me if they see it hanging on my wall?  Breakfast at Sotheby’s is an alphabetical guide to how people reach answers to such questions, and how in the process art is given a financial value.

Based on Philip Hook’s thirty-five years’ experience of the art market, Breakfast at Sotheby’s explores the artist and his hinterland (including definitions for -isms, middle-brow artists, Gericault, and suicides), subject and style (from abstract art and banality through surrealism and war), “wall-power,” provenance, and market weather.

Comic, revealing, piquant, splendid, and occasionally absurd, Breakfast at Sotheby’s is a book of pleasure and intelligent observation, as engaged with art as it is with the world that surrounds it.


Books of the Year 2013: Sunday Times, Guardian, Spectator, Financial Times, Mail on Sunday.


Author: Philip Hook

Format: Paperback

Size: 19.8 x 12.9 cm, 368 pages

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 9780718192457

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