Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Recordveiling voor Christie's Amsterdam

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The worlds upside down at Christie's.

We're in the middle of a crisis. Banks and countries are going bankrupt.

Yet we've had a record-breaking year. In New York, we've auctioned off objects worth more than half a billion dollars.

Expectations are high at this auction in Cristie's in Amsterdam.

Art auctions are doing well.

particularly the big names like Karel Appel and Marlne Dumas.

In New York, we set a record of 80 million dollars for a Mark Rothko.

That's a world record. But the same holds true for Yves Klein and Jackson Pollock, just to mention a few.

Top-level paintings will never drop in value.

And you can enjoy them.

You put shares in a drawer, but you can look at a painting every day.

So you hang your "profit" on the wall and in 20 years you can cash it in.

One of the masterpieces at this evening's auction is "Diagonals", a 1967 painting by Dutchman Jan Schoonhoven.

'Jan Schoonhoven worked from 1946 to 1979 for the Dutch post office.

"It's a life in lines, summed up in forms and light.

This work was made in 1967. It was sold at the So Paulo Biennial...

to Olivetti from Brazil, who kept it in his basement for 40 years.

You can see that it's dirty. In auction terms we call that "good dirt"

That means it hasn't been touched or restored. It's completely original.

We've appraised the work at between 180 and 220,000 euros, but who knows?

The result? 3.9 million euros for 60 works of art. That's a new record for Christie's.

Christie's is satisfied, but bidders can also be unlucky and not get the work they wanted.

My bid was going to be 17, but if someone else bids 18, then I'll have to go up to 19.

But I should count my lucky stars, because I bought two works yesterday.

You also have to set a limit for yourself at auctions and not get carried away in the heat of the moment.

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