Gurr Johns (and Kate Moss) Headline Sotheby’s Contemporary Sale
On 14 October, Gurr Johns successfully sold Marc Quinn’s "Microcosmos (Siren)", a sculpture of supermodel Kate Moss crafted from twenty-two pounds of solid gold, for $908,245. The object made the headlines as a standout lot in Sotheby’s Contemporary Evening Sale, and while Artinfo suggested so much bling might be in "bad taste", the market disagreed. After all, in an uncertain financial climate, there can be few better inflations hedges than a combination of precious metal and top-tier contemporary art.
Art Basel Miami Beach: 1-4 December 2011
Gurr Johns is pleased to be returning to Art Basel Miami Beach, one of the premier collector fairs in the world. Christopher Gaillard, President of the North American division, and other Gurr Johns specialists will be on hand to offer independent expertise and advice, and will be happy to provide guidance and tours to interested clients. To schedule an appointment, please contact Emily Schwab in our New York office at email@example.com
'Smith [managing director of Gurr Johns] advised ICI to buy back the tempera original of the Corrosion poster they had commissioned from Edward Wadsworth in 1941. The company had given it away as a retirement present, despite Wadsworth's growing reputation. It cost them £25,300 at Sotheby's. Good investment. And good for the company image.'
'Mr Ashford points to the Gurr Johns Managed Valuation Service as a possible way forward. "The methodology which lies behind it is pivotal," he says. "This is not just an evaluation system, but it is possibly an innovative hybrid of the next generation for art market data analysis. "Traditionally, the fine art and antiques business is a knowledge-based industry; reconcile this with technology and at last you will start to get somewhere." '
Antiques Trade Gazette
'A handful of smaller companies compete with the private banks to offer advice, including Gurr Johns, an [art] advisory and valuations group...
Harry Smith, Gurr Johns' chief executive, says his advisers bid at auction and negotiate with dealers on behalf of clients.
"The key fact to remember is that the art market is full of opportunities for people to lose their shirts," says Smith. "We offer protection because we really know the market.
Most private banks rely on the art advisory business to bring in investment clients," he adds.'
Can’t Afford a Picasso? How About a Piece of One?
‘Given such conflict, some art experts worry that investors looking for deals may get stuck with less-than-desirable works. Art dealers are more likely to keep bargains for themselves, said Harry Smith, chief executive of the appraisal firm Gurr Johns, and increase prices when art funds come calling - if they work with them at all.
"The headwinds art funds are facing is that the things they want to buy are expensive, and the things that are cheap they shouldn’t be buying," Mr. Smith said.’
Read full article: http://dealbook.nytimes.com
The New York Times
'Buying for clients is an equally subtle game and last year Gurr Johns, London's oldest established consultancy, purchased art worth £29 million without even owning any of it...
Its managing director, Harry Smith, reveals how significant the art adviser's role has become: "We provide our clients with great secrecy," he said. "We rarely bid publicly." '