Learn the art of buying art at auction

The Life: Christie's latest auction is trying to entice buyers by slowly releasing images of Arab, Iranian and Turksih pieces of art.
A viewer looks at The Second Marriage by the Syrian artist Khaled Takreti. AFP
A viewer looks at The Second Marriage by the Syrian artist Khaled Takreti. AFP

Christie's has been trying to excite eager art lovers in the past few weeks by releasing images of work that will be sold at its Arab, Iranian and Turkish show.

The auction house is offering some paintings by big names, such as Ahmed Alsoudani and Jewad Selim, both Iraqi artists, and an Iranian painter called Nasrollah Afjehei.

If, like me, you are not an art lover, then these names probably mean little to you.

But Christie's is hoping to change all that when it rolls out its updated auction format for a second time.

It is splitting the auction over two evenings in Dubai, the first is set aside for pieces by renowned artists, while the second is for rising stars.

Pieces auctioned on the first night will start at about US$50,000, (Dh183,660) while the starting bids on the second night could be as low as $1,500.

So if you want to learn the art of picking art, then this new format could be for you.

Among the pieces up for sale, there is one painting, estimated at $12,000 to $18,000, by an Egyptian artist called Atef Ahmed.

It shows two contrasting views of women, with the figure on the left in a tight-fitting dress and provocative pose, beside another hidden beneath her abaya.

There is also a colourful abstract piece of a news vendor selling a variety of Arabic broadsheet newspapers with differing social and political views. This is expected to go for $6,000 to $8,000.

If you are thinking of going along to the auction, you will have plenty of time to swot up, because it is not until April.

rjones@thenational.ae

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Published: February 2, 2012 04:00 AM

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