Buying Art - The Basics: Part XII - Additional Comments Better Left Unsaid

Arts & Culture: My previous article, concerning comments art dealers would rather not hear while doing shows, got a laugh from many of our readers so I thought I would follow-up with more of our favorites.

What you need to remember is that dealers, while participating at shows, can see thousands of people every day and while you think your comment or question is unique, odds are it is not and they have probably heard it more times than they want to remember.

1. Are you selling the frames or the paintings? I know you are saying no way someone said that! Well, yes they did and it happened at the recent show in Chicago. To make it even worse, the individual was wearing a press badge and videotaping our works. Now here was my answer: Yes, we are selling the frames and as a bonus you get the painting at no additional charge!

2. Do you buy paintings? No, we just sell them. Come on people; get with the program. Of course we BUY paintings otherwise we would have very little, or nothing, to sell.

3. I cannot afford them, but thanks for bringing them. You're welcome!

4. When I win the lottery I will be back. We hear this one at every show and with the typical lottery odds, it is more than likely that you will not be back. Let me say this I hope I hit the winning numbers first then I can go sit in a little hut on a beach in Tahiti.

5. I would love to buy something but you just don't have what I am looking for. The real question is --- do you have any idea what you are looking for? Probably not. So this is another comment better left unsaid.

6. I'll know it when it hits me. I am not a violent person, but don't tempt me! I have always wanted to hit someone with a painting just to see if they would buy it.

7. I'll know it when I see it (goes along with the last two). Now this is usually a comment from someone who really has no intention of buying it is an easy way, in their mind, to move on.

8. What is your best price? Look, a dealer's BEST price is one that is far MORE than the work is currently priced at. We all know there is usually a little wiggle room in everything, and if you are going to ask for a LOWER price be prepared to make a deal. Try not to waste the dealer's time.

Howard L. Rehs Rehs Galleries, Inc., New York City
JustLuxe Contributor

Howard L. Rehs

After graduating from New York University in 1981, with a degree in Art History, I moved to London for a year to study and buy 19th century British Victorian art for our gallery. Since then my interests have included all schools of art from the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, I am considered one of the leading art dealers in 19th century French Academic and Realist painting and the world's exp...(Read More)

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