Obscene amounts of money?

Last week we saw a couple in Scotland scoop £161m on the Euromillions Lottery. They re-define ‘lucky’. You can’t help but wish them well with their instant wealth and fame.

I got into a discussion at Nottingham Contemporary last week about the ‘value’ of art. Or should that be ‘price’ of art? I work in a fairly capitalist sector of the market. It is driven by money and I see lots of it thrown at property. It doesn’t really worry me too much – as an agent it’s not usually ‘my’ money. I am trying to make other people money (or at least protect what they have) and I get paid for doing that.

I rarely come across the levels of money from Lottery Winners. Or for that matter that value / cost of some art pieces. Last year some Giacometti work sold at auction for £65m. That was a life size piece of bronze sculpture. If you want to see what a Giacommetti looks like – go and see one at the Nottingham Contemporary!

The Giacometti sculpture is fantastic. But is is ‘worth’ £50m+? In a true market it is worth what someone will pay and what someone will sell for.

But the interesting question posed was whether this sort of money was obscene when you consider the value of that money. For instance the ‘value’ of Bangladesh is estimated to be around that sum. A piece of art has the same value as a whole Country? Wow.

There will always be rich and poor. There will always be lucky people and unlucky people. But you do have to wonder sometimes how things have got so out of kilter? Surely it is out of kilter?

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