The Art of the Steal by CHRISTOPHER MASON


The Art of the Steal tells the story of several larger-than-life figures - the billionaire tycoon Alfred Taubman; the most powerful woman in the art world, Dede Brooks; and the wily British executive Christopher Davidge who conspired to cheat their clients out of millions of dollars. It offers an unprecedented look inside this secretive, glamorous, gold-plated industry, describing just how Sothebys and Christies grew from clubby, aristocratic businesses into slick international corporations. And it shows how the groundwork for the most recent illegal activities was laid decades before the perpetrators were caught by federal prosecutors.

Personal Review: The Art of the Steal by CHRISTOPHER MASON
The time was December 1999. It was Davidge of Christie's v. Diane (Dede) Brooks of Sotheby's since Tennant and Taubman of Christie's and

Taubman was entranced by the ambition and intelligence of Dede Brooks. Davidge was given the job of transforming Christie's to a sleek modern firm to compete with Taubman's Sotheby's. She learned finance at Citibank in their lending program and worked initially as an unpaid assistant at Sotheby's. was needed to bring .) In the seventies there had been a dustup over buyer's premiums. agreements began to unravel. He had been a developer of luxury shopping centers. (and potentially illegal). sought to withdraw from the fray and view the matter from on high while tasking their underlings to work out the details. had seemingly conspired to fix prices. Taubman's father lost all his money in the Depression. In June 1997 the NEW YORK TIMES broke the story. As a teenage retail clerk Taubman urged his employer to break down threshold resistance to buying through focus on the aesthetic and emotional experience of the customer at the point of entry. In 1988 Taubman took Sotheby's public. Davidge. Investigation for anti-competitive practices began in Britain in 1996. (mostly Davidge's meticulous notes). Christies. He suggested leveraging art ownership. Around the same time carefully wrought. At Christie's Davidge was protected by Lord Carrington. (This was an instance of solving the problem of threshold resistance. sought entry into the government's anti-trust amnesty program.S. He saw that the business practices of the auction houses were antiquated and that their incomes could be increased. The auction process intrigued her. no longer Christie's CEO. In 1997 the U.Sotheby's. providing documents. (whereby he opened the dialogue with Alfred Taubman). That same year Davidge was appointed CEO of Christie's and Dede Brooks at Sotheby's acquired a promotion to global duties. Staff was reminded that American anti-trust laws were punitive. (Behind his back he was referred to as the butler for class reasons. Carrington led the firm until Sir Anthony Tennant became chairman of the board in 1993. They.) Taubman was fixated on market share. The two firms were alleged to have colluded and fines were imposed in Britain. Alfred Taubman wanted Sotheby's to forsake such off-putting arrogance. Christie's moves came two and a half years after the initial interviews and requests for documents. Justice Department in Manhattan subpoened Sotheby's and Christie's officals on suspician of colluding on the setting of commisssions. Taubman and Tennant. heads of the boards of directors. Alfred Taubman was the white knight to Sotheby's in 1993 when he acquired a controlling interest in it. In the old Sotheby's people were made to feel stupid.

Sotheby's and Brooks entered pleas of guilty.the case against Taubman and Brooks and Christie's was able to secure his cooperation. Taubman was found guilty at trial. This book is a stunning narrative of a smashingly interesting ca se. For More 5 Star Customer Reviews and Lowest Price: The Art of the Steal by CHRISTOPHER MASON 5 Star Customer Reviews and Lowest Price! .

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