In the last few years the top end of the art market has flourished and collectors have been prepared to pay astonishing amounts to own a modern masterpiece. This lecture is about the works that have sold for over $100 million and is an excuse to examine some beautiful and varied art. These works would not achieve such sky-high prices if they were no good. So we’ll see some wonderful paintings including those by Picasso, Cezanne, Leonardo, Rembrandt, Modigliani, Klimt, Bacon and Pollock, all held together by the common thread of their extraordinary commercial value. But we will also look at the buyers and sellers, the stories behind their works, the reasons for changing hands and Ian will also try to answer the question ” Are they really worth hundreds of millions of pounds?”
For this lecture we are delighted to welcome back Ian Swankie who last visited Grayshott in November 2019 when he gave his outstanding talk ‘Pots and Frocks – The World of Grayson Perry”. Ian is a Londoner with a passion for art and architecture. He is an official guide at Tate Modern, Tate Britain, Guildhall Art Gallery and St Paul’s Cathedral, and gives tours at each venue. He is also a qualified and active freelance London guide and leads regular tours for various corporations and organisations. Since 2012 he has led a popular weekly independent art lecture group in his hometown of Richmond in West London, and he gives talks on a variety of subjects. He is an accredited lecturer for The Arts Society, and a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Art Scholars, one of the City Livery Companies.