A Collectors Tale – From the Collectors Mail Bag

Mimi is …well…way more of an old friend than a collector! She’s the owner of Off the Wall Gallery in Houston, TX, one of my oldest and dearest authorized dealers. She has exhibited my 3D pop art for more than twenty years. She emailed this to me last week and i wanted to share it with all of you..the moral? Believe in the intrinsic value of art….let it move you…let it reflect your passion and your personality…and bring it into your life….for all the RIGHT reasons! That’s one thing i want to make clear…you buy it because you LOVE it…if it appreciates, you’re that much luckier! Thanks Mimi!

 

We  owe our success to our clients and the trust they have allowed us to earn in their  hearts, minds and spirits.  It is an honor to be allowed to direct someone’s   eye toward a certain artists work as well as introduce an artist to a new client for the first time.  The connection a client, friend, and patron feels when they find a new artist or a new work is magical – sparks can and sometimes do fly! 

New relationships are created that can never be undone. The question is who owns what?  Is it the patron who purchases the artwork or is it the artwork that forever   captivates the heart and soul of the patron.   Who is to say what is held by whom or vice versa  -Interesting topic of conversation.

 

Recently I purchased a sculpture by Mackenzie Thorpe.   I should have kept “Life” when I first bought it for the gallery several years ago.  It spoke to me.   I wanted it but so did some of my clients …… and was I a collector or a dealer?  Good question.

It turns out that I am both.   Last week I was given another opportunity to own a copy of this sculpture “Life”, but this time at more than twice the original price.   I bought it and I waited for it to arrive at the gallery.  I anxiously opened the cardboard box that said “ Mimi- personal” on the top.   As I opened the box and unwrapped the sculpture, I was thrilled. My sculpture no longer eluded me.  I placed it on my desk to inspect it.  Sometimes we just want things we can no longer have, or things we think we should have had.  Not the case here—

 

This sculpture and its little saying on the base (“I who have nothing bring you  my love so that you will grow in a world of hope”) made me smile as much today as it did the first time. It was not about the conquest or finding this elusive sculpture after all this time or even relearning the lesson of holding onto something that might be of value one day.   It was the feeling of having a second chance and being given the opportunity to own something that still makes me happy after all these years-I welcomed that opportunity.

 

We all know the story of the antique that got away.  Learn from this lesson and  don’t repeat my mistake.  We all work so hard, and life passes very quickly.  Sometimes it’s better to spend the money that will forever put a smile on your face rather than invest another fifteen hundred or two thousand dollars in the stock market.  Sometimes that small amount can multiply beyond our wildest dreams.  There is a client that bought Andy Warhol’s  “Howdy Doody” in 1981 for fifteen hundred dollars.  Up until that time, it was the most expensive piece of art that I had ever sold.  Today “Howdy Doody” is worth $60,000 -$75,000 00, depending on its condition and provenance. Imagine, a signed and numbered limited edition print.   Imagine just one print of two hundred serigraphs becoming so valuable.  What if you were that client who called me looking for “Howdy  Doody” all those years ago. The smile it would have brought you all these years while you looked at one of your childhood hero’s?    Maybe next time it will be you.

 

                                                                              –Mimi Sperber-Wasserburg

 

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One Response to “A Collectors Tale – From the Collectors Mail Bag”

  1. Skip says:

    I think its great you completed your quest for Life. My wife and I are seeking the same sculpture. When it was available I had recently been laid off so it hit home for more reasons than one but was not affordable. I have since gained employment again and such is “Life”!
    Would you kindly tell me what you paid for it and what its original offer was…I am going on an all out assault to obtain my “Life” and am doing all the recon I can.

    Thank you,
    Skip

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