A Stradivarius fetched $2.4 million at auction yesterday but anyone with the proper chops got to take a climate-controlled test drive before the auction. The violin's minders at Christie's screened potential players, in part, by looking for "the telltale bruise under the jaw that comes from resting on the chin rest of the violin", which Lilly calls a "violin hickey". There are several theories as to why Antonio Stradivari's instruments sound so wonderful, but no one has cracked the mystery yet.
kottke.org posts about auctions
Greg Allen gives us the scoop on Nov 09 2006
Greg Allen gives us the scoop on how big art auctions work. "People come to me and want to bid with a signal that they don't want anyone else to see. He may hold his pencil in his mouth, or say, 'I'm bidding as long as I have my legs crossed.' And I've got their number, and they never show a paddle. That's the way it's done."
It's neither high quality nor rare, so Jul 13 2006
A fan site on MySpace for the Apr 19 2006
A fan site on MySpace for the hot UK band Arctic Monkeys reportedly sold for $2000+, although it's unclear (because they took the auction page down) if eBay allowed the transaction to go through. Mena, how much for Ready Steadman Go?
A 1904 photograph by Edward Steichen was recently sold at auction for more than $2.9 million, the most anyone's ever paid for a photo at auction. (via consc)
The issues involved with buying and selling Jan 27 2006
The issues involved with buying and selling moon dust. Back in 1993, a 200-milligram moon rock was sold for $442,500.
What the hell? Almost 500 pounds of Legos Oct 06 2005
What the hell? Almost 500 pounds of Legos up for auction on eBay. "This is my collection for the past 25 years, it's time to go." Bid stands at ~$6800. (thx, karl)