The Price of Everything

HBO's documentary "The Price of Everything" was released recently to largely positive reviews, amid a flurry of commentary. According to the network, the Nathaniel Kahn film "examines the role of art and artistic passion in today’s money-driven, consumer-based society," and "exposes deep contradictions as it holds a mirror up to contemporary values and times, coaxing out the dynamics at play in pricing the priceless."

“this is the value of a house. It's not fair. I like it, but it's not a house.”

But one quote by renowned painter, Gerhard Richter, stood out to us at ARTBnk. As he walked through a gallery full of his work, Richter points at one painting and remarks, "this is the value of a house. It's not fair. I like it, but it's not a house."

At ARTBnk we wondered what he meant. What is the value of the painting? How nice of a house are we talking about? Just how much does Gerhard Richter think a house costs?

We decided to find out.

We tracked the painting down at the Marian Goodman Gallery and once we had the name (939-10 Abstraktes Bild), we had the value within seconds: $2,573,048

How do we know that? It’s probably a good time to mention that ARTBnk has built the industry’s first purpose-built art market database that normalizes and standardizes thousands of attributes that impact the valuation of tradeable art.

Using our proprietary Real Time Valuation (RTV) algorithm, we were able to analyze over 6,000 data points and factors, such as information about the artist, the work of art, the art market at large, and general economic conditions to produce an objective valuation in mere seconds.

So is Richter’s painting comparable to the cost of a house? For $2,573,048, we’d like to think so.

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