Tagged: secrecy

Will money laundering laws end art world’s culture of secrecy?

When a Botticelli painting went under the hammer last month at Sotheby’s in New York for $92 million, it was assumed the buyer was a Russian oligarch since the bidding was done by an adviser to wealthy Russians.

But as art journalist Scott Reyburn told “The Week in Art” podcast, it’s not always that simple: “Sometimes very wealthy collectors use telephone bidders that imply a certain nationality just to guarantee their own anonymity… to throw us off the scent,” he said.

The ultra-wealthy prize that sort of confidentiality, and it also helps build the mystique and theatre in which auction

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