Posts Tagged ‘painting’

Scoreless

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Richard Rupchuislias painting 196727Paintings can be fun to buy, especially fresh off the street. You never know when you might hit it big. The picker who brought me this one picked it up in front of a house where, years earlier, he scored one of his best finds.

I first heard the story as one of the other dealers in town related it. He told of painting he bought from a picker for a hundred or so that ended up fetching several thousand on eBay. When he saw the picker again, he mentioned that the painting had done pretty well, and the picker said, “Oh, maybe I should have taken the other one, too.” Years later, I became friends with this picker, and he related a cautionary tale about how he sold a painting once for way too little, the dealer even banging him down on the price. Much later he found out the dealer made thousands with it on eBay.

This is a small painting, roughly 11″ by 12″, signed on verso Richard “Rupchuslias” or something like that.  It’s dated 1967, and you can certainly see the influences of the heavy hitters of the day. It appears to be gouache on board. It’s a bit muddled, but it does have an attraction, which may explain why many looked and none bought when it was offered for sale at my old store.

Orange Drip

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

small orange abstract paintingI purchased this little painting–it’s 11″ by 9″ overall–at the Stormville flea market a few years ago. It was laid out on a tarp with other artwork, none of which interested me.

I hovered as discreetly as I could manage while a potential buyer squatted down in the early morning grass and gave it the once over, then asked the seller for a price. Apparently twenty was too much, and he drifted off. I wasn’t entirely convinced myself.  Buying stuff for a living is often a struggle between buyer’s remorse and non-buyer’s regret. This time I let the gut response rather than a more considered calculation guide me and I sidled on over and ponied up.

The poor man’s Pollock hung in various places around the store, but nobody wanted to pay $60 or $80 or whatever paltry sum I was asking. Finally I figured the heck with that and took it home.  It has a bedroom wall to itself, and I notice it more often than not. It sure makes me happy. I love the Molteni orange background.

I’ve had art that was by “listed” artists and “worth” something, and I always felt compelled to sell it to pay the bills. Once another small time dealer, more nervous and jumpy than he normally is, brought me a few thousand in cash in a paper bag for a couple of  damaged paintings by a Polish artist from the 1940s. (When someone brings you an ultimatum and a bag of cash for something, you can safely bet that whatever you’ve got in your hand is worth a lot more than what’s in the bag.) Other pieces just  got snapped up quickly. Every now and again I sneaked something home for myself.

At this early juncture in the life of Absolute Galore, I’ve decided Thursdays will be art day. I mostly won’t have much to say on art day because, well, you all know what a picture’s worth.


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