The Many Lives of Maya Antiquities: Tracking Distribution and Redistribution through Auction Catalogues
Author(s): Cara G. Tremain
Glossy sales catalogues published by high-end auction houses present a seemingly endless supply of antiquities for purchase from around the world. These catalogues offer insight into market trends and allow the volume of antiquities being bought and sold at auction to be monitored. At a time when the internet auction market is growing, and the publication of information in catalogue form is declining, it is important to record and share data from available sales catalogues. This paper presents the results of a systematic study of Maya antiquities at auction, using sales catalogues that cover a period of more than 50 years. Quantitative studies of auction catalogues are useful for understanding the volume of antiquities that have been bought and sold at auction; the types of antiquities that are more vulnerable to looting and forgery; and whether the market is becoming more or less opaque with respect to provenance. Studies such as these, although time consuming and hampered by the difficulties of accessing information, are important for an understanding of the past and current market in antiquities.
Cite this Record
The Many Lives of Maya Antiquities: Tracking Distribution and Redistribution through Auction Catalogues. Cara G. Tremain. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430104)
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min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;
Abstract Id(s): 15208