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Art Markets & Art Sales: Histories & Studies

Course guide for ARTHST 231, ECON 344, VMS242


Published dissertations on art markets can provide

  • raw data [appendices of material], 
  • innovative methodological discussions,
  • initial findings to be debunked and included in your project. 

Note that Sotheby's Ph.D. program is included in the PQDT (Proquest Dissertations and Theses).

PQDT - All dissertations and many master's theses granted in the United States and Canada.  Nearly all Full text pdf.


Reitlinger, Gerald.  The economics of taste.  London, Barrie and Rockliff [1961-70] Lilly Reference N8675 .R44 1961  - the original study of economics and tastes.  Essentially no data, examining 18th-century market trends.

Pedigree and panache : a history of art auction in Australia / Shireen Huda.  Canberra, ACT : ANU E Press, 2008.  Law Library N8605.A8 H83 2008   - a recent study of the market in Australia.

Velthuis, Olav.  Talking prices : symbolic meanings of prices on the market for contemporary art / Olav Velthuis. 
 Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, c2005.  Lilly N6490 .V375 2005  - sociological view of the art market in the 20th century.

Galenson, David W.  The careers of modern artists : evidence from auctions of contemporary paintings / David W. Galenson. 
Cambridge, MA : National Bureau of Economic Research, c1997.   Law Library HB1 .N37 no.6331   - a working paper with some important methodological observations on analyzing the modern art market.

Thompson, Don.   The $12 million stuffed shark : the curious economics of contemporary art and auction houses / Don Thompson.  London : Aurum, c2008.  Lilly Library N8600 .T56 2008 - Damien Hirst in extremis.

Subject Guide

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Lee Sorensen
Box 90727
Lilly Library