Saturday, December 23, 2017

Upgrading a collection, knowing when it's time to sell

     If you've collected anything for any length of time you've then probably sold something along the way as well.   10 years ago in my zeal for building my collection I bought some things that didn't fit later on.  I've talked about them before but now I want to talk about the process a bit more in depth.
     A pragmatic collector realizes that at certain times removing an item from ones collection is just as important as adding an item.  If we're not to become hoarders we must constantly evaluate the items in our collections with an eye towards improvement and with focus on our goal as long term collectors.  Let me demonstrate with some examples.

Example 1: Weber Costello 8 inch school globe, 1928

This is a great globe that I've had in my collection for many years.  It's representative of a classic 1920's classroom globe, and it's in very nice shape, but it's destined to be sold someday.  Why you ask......?  Well because someday I'm going to run across  a stunningly perfect example of this globe, they are not uncommon and surely that day will come.  When it does it's out with the old and in with the new.  I won't hold onto two examples of the same globe I call this the "upgrade sell" it is probably the most common reason an advancing collector sells anything.  

Example 2:  Crams 16 inch political floor globe, 1938 very first globe purchase.......a quality floor globe, in great shape.  I bought this globe when I knew nothing about globes its big, its nice and eventually it's going bye bye....  I'm generally a bit of a sentimentalist but I've got to be a pragmatist also.  I don't own a warehouse, and floor globes are big bulky furniture. I've got room for 1 maybe 2 exceptional floor globes, or a nice pair of floor globes ( ideally actually) so what's wrong with this pre war Cram's.....?  Nothing!  It's just one of those eventual sales that will take place as another "upgrade sell" .  Another collector will have a chance to love this globe as much as I do because I'll be busy loving a new floor model 1885 Andrews.... for example....!!    The upgrade sell...........

Example 3: H. Kiepert miniture globe 1896

 I like this globe, it's stunning in it's detail close up.  and the compass still works!  It's actually dated at 1896 in the cartouche, it's 120 plus years young, and earlier this year the circumstances were right for a sale.  Now this little gem is complicated. It's in marvelous shape, near pristine.  I decided to part with this one eventually because it just does not fit the narrative of my collection. I'm trying to build a collection that focuses on the history of American globe making, and this little guy is German.  Now the German history and additions to the art of globe manufacture are incredible,  they just don't fit my collection, this gem of a globe will be more happy in another collection. 

     Knowing what to buy, and knowing what to sell in a collection are equally important.   When your a new collector you focus on acquisition nearly 100%.  I've had globes before that just a few years earlier I figured I'd never part with.  Buying and holding everything.....well that's hoarding threes a DSM-5 code for hoarding now ( 300.3  BTW)   So I never want to be called a hoarder that's mental illness!!  ( OK tongue in cheek)  no seriously..... it is.   
     Anyhow setting goals, smart buying, education ( that's the big one)  and smart selling.  That's collection building 101,  that's connoisseurship.   That sounds so much better.   

Merry Christmas,  Happy Hanukkah,  Joyous Festivus ( Dec 23) ,  Lest we forget my favorite Boxing day!!    

1 comment:

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