Author: The Auction Collective
Published: 13 Jan 2020
What are Studio Sale Auctions?
A group of individual Timed Auctions run by artists selling artwork directly from their studios. The auctions are launched together and all close in a dedicated Studio Sales auction week. View the 2022 Studio Sale Auctions.
How long do the auctions run for?
The auctions go live on the same day as part of a combined marketing campaign. They are live for two weeks and then close on several days across one week.
This ensures we generate as much interest across the studio sales and give bidders a chance to bid in all the studio sale auctions.
Why hold a Studio Sale?
Artist’s run studio sales for many reasons, including selling:
- To raise funds for new projects
- In place, or as part, of Open Studio events
- As part of a studio move
- Previously exhibited artwork
- Artwork from cancelled exhibitions (e.g., due to Covid-19)
- Older artwork
- Archival material (e.g., drawings, studies for larger works or public projects)
What are the benefits of a Studio Sale auction?
- Competitive bidding with no upper price limit
- Mass marketing
- New buyers and underbidders
- No published sale results
- A focused and efficient sale deadline
- Professional presentation
- A permanent dedicated webpage to you and your artwork
- Realtime reporting analytics
See more Auctions for Artists and What Sells Well.
Why do Collectors like Studio Sale Auctions?
To collect work from artists that they love but missed opportunities in the past at previous exhibitions. To buy work that has not been shown before. To bid on works with more accessible starting prices because of the nature of the studio sale, rather than a solo show of new work for instance.
How does a studio sale work?
Each artist runs an individual timed auction on The Auction Collective website with select artwork from their studio. We have designed the studio sales so that you, the artist, are in control of your sale and The Auction Collective is here to support you.
- You will be given a demo and access to our Auction Management System (AMS). This is where you upload and catalogue your studio sale, including the lead image and introductory text. This is also where you will be able to see registrations, bids, traffic and other auction analytics such as page visits.
- You will need to decide which works you will want to include and you will need to begin preparing your artworks for auction. There will be a deadline for all details to be submitted ahead of the sale going live on the website so that the auction can be proofed.
- Your auction will go live with all other artist’s studio sales two weeks ahead of the sale week. This amount of time allows the artists and The Auction Collective to promote the sale and to gather bids. During this time artists can also hold physical open studios events / exhibitions of the work on offer.
- Alongside your marketing, we will promote your auction to our network of collectors and bidders via social media campaigns, newsletters and web promotion.
- Your auction will have a dedicated closing time within the Studio Sale week for the final flurry of bids.
- During and after the auction, you will be able to see and export all results and registrations from your AMS account so that you can follow up with all bidders and buyers.
- You can choose to handle the payments and shipping yourself or The Auction Collective can manage the post-sale logistics for you.
What are the fees?
Auction Fee - 5%
Payment Processing – 4% (Optional)
All fees include VAT and are only applicable on sold artwork.
How do I get paid?
If you opt for The Auction Collective to handle payments, we will send automatic payment requests to the winning bidders. The buyer's payments are received in an escrow account with our payment provider (MangoPay).
The funds are kept in dedicated e-wallets assigned to each artist. Once the buyer has received their artwork, the funds (less our fees) are transferred directly to your bank account which you can upload through a secure portal in your Auction Collective account.
If you are collecting the payments yourself, you will have access to the buyer’s contact details to invoice directly as per your standard sale process. The Auction Collective will the invoice you separately with our fees.
How does shipping work?
You will be responsible for shipping artworks. This is arranged between you and the buyer following the sale. With each lot, you can offer a range of shipping methods on the website:
- A link so that prospective buyers can request a shipping quote from you
- List shipping fees, ie. 'UK Shipping - £20'
- Collection from your studio - free of charge
- Shipping for free
You will need to collect payment for shipping form the buyer.
Can buyers view the works in person?
As the auctions are only run online, it is up to each artist how they want to market the auction physically.
Buyers enjoy seeing the artwork in person and meeting artists, so it could be beneficial to run an open studio or an exhibition with fellow Studio Sale artists for a period during the three weeks the auction is live.
Can I upload multiple images?
Each lot has a dedicated webpage where you are able to upload multiple images of the artwork. You can use this opportunity to take pictures of the work in situ, on your studio wall or close up details to give the collectors a better sense of your work.
How do I prepare artwork for the Studio Sale?
Advice on preparing your artwork for auction can be found in this article. However, if including archive studies and drawings, a studio sale might contain more unframed artwork than normal auctions.
For older artwork in particular, it is important to do a condition check of the artwork and detail any damage or discrepancies in the catalogue note.
How many works should be included?
A studio sale can have anywhere between 5 and 30 artworks. Works can be from various stages of an artist’s career and can be in various formats and mediums.
How do you price artwork in a studio sale?
The primary reason for doing a studio sale is to clear your studio, so artworks should be priced to sell.
This will mean setting starting prices as low as you are happy to sell a work for, or perhaps having no starting price at all. What is the minimum you would accept? You want to attract the most bidders and you don’t want to deal with unsold items.
Don’t forget you can put an estimate on each artwork that reflects the true value of the piece. Whilst your starting bid can be what you are willing to accept for it. The estimate stays published after the auction has finished but the starting price and final prices are removed.
What’s the next step?
- You decide on your shipping and payment collection options
- We send you an Auction Agreement and our Code of Conduct
- We set you up on our Auction Management System (AMS)
- You upload your auction description, image and artwork
- We support you and help proof the auction
- The Auction goes live…
Suggested for you:
- How to Prepare Your Artwork for Auction
- Estimates, Reserves & Pricing
- Top Tips for a Successful Auction