Economics at your fingertips  

Art Dealers' Strategy The case of Goupil, Boussod & Valadon from 1860 to 1914

Geraldine David (), Christian Huemer and Kim Oosterlinck ()

No 13941, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: Despite the existence of a large literature dedicated to the art market, the management of art galleries remains a black box as both buyers and sellers put a high value on discretion. This paper overcomes the traditional lack of quantitative data by analysing the complete books of one of the most successful French galleries at the end of the 19th century: Goupil, Boussod & Valadon. This original database covers the sale of more than 40,000 artworks that occurred between 1860 and 1914. Rapidity to sell artworks was a key element in Goupil's strategy. As a whole Goupil sold 71% of artworks bought. Out of the sold artworks, almost 80% were sold within a year (with 22% before the acquisition reflecting orders). Changes in ownership allow us to quantify changes in business strategy. The first owner required a lower mark-up for the artists in residence it was sponsoring and higher ones for nobles and art dealers. The second owner followed a similar strategy but also required a higher mark-up from former branches such as Knoedler.

Keywords: Art Gallery; Art Investment; Art market; French Economic History (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: N14 N44 Z11 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cul and nep-his
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from ... rs/dp.php?dpno=13941

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

Page updated 2020-05-09
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:13941