An anonymous Massachusetts private collector will have been reminded that the value of antiquities can go down as well as up. Yesterday the youth with cockerel sold at auction for $20,000 (lot 139). Yet when it was purchased at Christie's in December 2004 the same piece fetched $22,705 (lot 576).
There has been the unresolved matter of the image from the Medici Dossier. Is the statue of the youth holding a cockerel the same as the piece shown in the Polaroid? Who consigned the piece to the anonymous Sotheby's sale in 1992? Why did Christie's overlook this part of the collecting history (or "provenance")?
And who now owns the statue? It is unlikely to be acquired by a North American museum. Was it purchased as stock for another dealer? Has it passed to another anonymous private collector? Is it now in the portfolio of an investment company that deals with antiquities?
From the Medici Dossier (courtesy of Christos Tsirogiannis).