What You Need to Know about Art Auctions

Art auctions have been around for hundreds of years, going back to 1766, when Christies set up shop in London. In the 250 years since, they have become big business, with the global turnover in 2022 generating US$16.5 billion through fine art auctions. And for the first time ever, over one million lots were offered at art auctions in just one year.

So there is no shortage worldwide for upcoming art auctions. But how can you decide which fine art auctions are right for you? This of course depends on your individual needs. Are you looking to sell art and why? Are you looking to buy and why?

Reasons for Selling Art and Buying Art at Auction

Reasons to sell art are very varied. Some beneficiaries may have inherited artworks that they have no interest in. Others are forced to sell perhaps because of a divorce or debt. With advancing age, many people are also downsizing, and their art collection does not fit the new home anymore. And let’s not forget the change in taste for art. What was appealing 25 years ago, is now considered outdated.

Meanwhile, buying at fine art auctions can be a very good way of starting an art collection at an affordable level. Contrary to popular belief, art auctions are not just for the wealthy.

In 2022 70% of the lots offered at art auctions sold actually for less than US$2,221, and 50% sold for below US$762.

The Benefits of Using a Professional Art Specialist like Banziger Hulme Fine Art

In both instances, art auctions provide a ready market to acquire or dispose of art. But for art novices, this can be tricky to navigate. For starters, do you really know what the art is worth?

This is when you need to speak to an art specialist like Banziger Hulme Fine Art Consultants. They can give you a general idea of the worth of your art in an initial free art valuation. In many instances, particularly in divorce and deceased estate matters, they will be able to provide you with a formal expert art valuation. In this way, all parties will have a clear idea of the true worth of the art and can make fully informed decisions on how to proceed.

With their 20+ years’ experience in the art market and their knowledge of the industry, each art specialist at Banziger Hulme can also advise you how and where to sell through auction and guide you through the process in order to achieve the best results.

If you are looking to buy, they can equally guide you and help you to avoid making potentially costly mistakes. Banziger Hulme are familiar with all major auction houses and will know about the upcoming art auctions that would be most suitable for your requirements. They can also perform due diligence on any artwork before buying, bid at auction and assist you with comprehensive after-sale service.


Before going to art auctions, it is in your own interest to speak with an independent art specialist like Banziger Hulme Fine Art Consultants, whether you are considering selling or buying art. They can assist you in with a professional impartial art valuation to find out the true value of the artworks and guide you through the auction process. This will ensure that your interests are looked after by an impartial art specialist all the way.

Read more about the Banziger Hulme fine art auction services at https://www.bhfineart.com/art-brokerage/