Culture - Detroit’s art sell-off: Flogging the family silver? It could be the most expensive art sale ever. So expensive, in fact, that no-one even knows how much it could make. The multi-billion dollar collection of the Detroit Institute of Art (DIA), packed with masterpieces by Rembrandt, Picasso, Degas, van Gogh, and many other painters, as well as sculpture, furniture and ancient Greek pottery, is under real threat of ending up under the auctioneer’s hammer. Despite a chorus of disapproval, Christie’s has been called in to put a price on part of DIA’s holdings, which comprise thousands of items.
Just 40 of them, the greatest treasures, could be worth an eye-popping $2.5 billion, according to the Detroit Free Press. Why? Detroit is an extreme, and tragic case: the art is literally irreplaceable. With museums staring at falling incomes and rising costs, the temptation to raid the basements is getting stronger. Sale of the century Such disposals have been happening for years. Since the financial crisis, such sales have accelerated sharply. Detroit Institute of Arts Deal Could Save Bankruptcy Auction. In a bankrupt city of well-documented woes like blighted houses, broken streetlights and persistent crime, few issues have galvanized residents like the possibility that the Detroit Institute of Arts could be stripped of its treasures.
That prospect became quite real late last year after Kevyn Orr, Detroit’s emergency manager, hired the auction house Christie’s to appraise the value of 1,741 city-owned paintings, sculptures, silver, furniture and drawings. Their verdict on the collection: it is worth between $421.5 million to $805 million.
(The appraisal only included works owned by the city and not the entire museum collection.) But none of the art has yet been sold – and in fact, the collection may be on the verge of being saved. On Monday, a group of national and local foundations, including The Ford Foundation and the John S. and James L. Plenty of hurdles remain. Detroit's Endangered Art Detroit Institute of Arts The Wedding Dance by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, c. 1566 1 of 10 Jennifer H.
Detroit's bankruptcy: Revenge of the 99% WHEN the news broke Friday that the bankrupt city of Detroit had filed its “plan of adjustment” for its creditors, many reacted with shock and horror. "A gut punch" is how AFSCME Council 25 described the cuts to their members' pensions. "Nonconfirmable" decried a committee that represents Detroit's retirees. It is not that there were any surprises, mind you. After all, many of the proposals had been hinted at and nobody doubts that the city cannot pay its debts. But expressing shock is all part of the art of the haggle. To act relieved is to undermine the prospect of a better deal. General retirees are facing a 35% cut to their monthly pensions. The disparity between bondholders and pensioners comes thanks to a unique plan proposed by a group of foundations and the governor of Michigan. The bondholders, or rather their insurers, are unhappy. Some argue that accrued pensions (ie, the coverage earned by an employee based on years of service) should always be honoured.
Detroit Institute of Arts collection worth billions, report says. The permanent collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts could be worth as much as $4.6 billion, according to a new report that also said the museum would see only a fraction of that amount if the city proceeded with its controversial plan to liquidate the prized collection. A study published Tuesday from the New York art investment firm Artvest Partners estimated that the DIA collection is worth $2.8 billion to $4.6 billion. In reality, the collection would sell for just $1.1 billion to $1.8 billion, it said. The difference is due in part to art-market trends; some parts of the market are considered to be stagnant. The report said that selling the DIA's most valuable works "would deprive the museum of its core attraction, drastically reduce attendance and related revenues" and would ultimately force the closure of the organization due to a loss of economic stability.
A 2014 Detroit art retrospective | Visual Art. There's no doubt about it — 2014 was a dynamic year in Detroit art. Street art was both celebrated and vilified, some galleries closed while others opened, and the city even attracted international attention as entrepreneurs from New York and Berlin eyed its ample abandoned buildings for future arts-related developments. Here's a look back at what we covered: One of the biggest commotions in art this year in Detroit was caused by developments on a story that originally broke more than four years ago, when a Packard Plant wall, apparently painted by the mysterious, internationally renowned street artist known as Banksy, was immediately snatched up by the 555 Gallery.
In March, the 555 announced it was looking to sell the painting, reigniting debates regarding the ownership of street art. Throwing a wrench into the whole thing, two local artists claimed that they were, in fact, the creators of the painting. Street art was front and center in much of Detroit's art chatter this year. Detroit Institute of Arts Copes With Threat of Art Selloff.