Going, going, gone online: art auctioneers scramble to stay open via the internet
Some high-value sales have been postponed, but others will go ahead online only
Lot 91 in Mullen’s Collector Cabinet sale: Erskine Childers’s royal navy reserve officer’s sword engraved R. E. Childers, (€3,000-€5,000). The auction has been postponed
With the nation on a go-slow and people staying indoors some auctioneers have postponed auctions due to take place over the coming weeks. Others have shifted to online-only platforms.
Kells auctioneer Damien Matthews is going ahead with an auction of over 1,000 lots this weekend, Saturday, March 21st and Sunday, March 22nd. However, the actual auction will take place behind closed doors, and is not open to the public. His auction rooms will be open for viewings while observing the government-advised social distancing.
Potential buyers can leave a written (in house), telephone or online bid prior to the auction, or can bid live through telephone bidding or in real time on the online platform easyliveauction.com
“Collections, for limited numbers of people at a time, will be available on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday after the auction, and we have a recommended delivery agent who can transport any goods purchased so people don’t have to leave their homes.” matthewsauctionrooms.com
Hegarty’s scheduled auction in Bandon, Co Cork, on Sunday, March 22nd, will go ahead but through the online platform only, as will Sheppard’s Tim O’Mahony sale on March 24th in Durrow, Co Laois. hegartyantiques.com and sheppards.ie
The weekly auctions by Herman &Wilkinson in Rathmines, Dublin, will go ahead, but will be online only. The company are arranging limited viewings, for up to 20 people at a specified time, and collections will be on a pre-arranged basis in order to facilitate social distancing. hermanwilkinson.ie
Adam’s of St Stephen’s Green has decided to suspend its forthcoming Important Irish Art auction from March 25th until a later date, as has Mullen’s of Laurel Park Collector Cabinet sale.
Whyte’s of Molesworth Street is closing its offices and gallery, but staff will still conduct valuations and answer inquires over the phone and email. Its April and May scheduled auctions may change as the situation unfolds.
Details of new dates and postponements can be found on the auction houses websites. adams.ie, mullenslaurelpark.com, lynesandlynes.com, whytes.ie and victormeeauctions.ie
John Weldon of Temple Bar, Fine Jewellery sale, which was originally due to take place on March 24th has now been pushed out until April 28th, and de Vere’s Fine Art sale, which was due to take place on March 31st, has been suspended to April 8th. All bidding will be online through the company’s new online platform. deveres.ie jwa.ie Further afield, Lynes &Lynes’ March 28th sale in Carrigtwohill, Co Cork, has also been postponed until further notice, along with Victor Mee’s Cavan auctions.
With the uncertainty of how long we will remain indoors until the threat of Covid-19 has passed, it is best to consult auctioneers websites as they will change in accordance with Government advice.
For auctions going ahead, bidding can be done online from the comfort and safety of your home.