Recently I was wandering thru downtown and passing an art auction location realized the auction would start shortly. I wandered in and looked around at the paintings they were going to auction and they were some interesting ones and had some decent minimum bids and ranged from fifty dollars to several thousand for some and came in all sizes from three by five inches to twenty x twenty-four inches framed.
I was debating whether to stay or not, when the auctioneer saw me and spoke to me. He asked me to stay and to assist him with the auction. Having never been an auctioneer assistant, I thought this could be fun and different. Little did I realize how different.
He called the auction to order, we had a decent sized crowd, and what I was hearing was this was a good auctioneer. He went thru the rules quickly and then began. He reached over toward my face and pulled a piece of art out my nose, which startled me and got the attention of the crowd. This was a smaller piece that looked plain, he started it at fifty dollars, and very quickly, it was at $200. He sold the painting.
He kept on pulling the paintings out my nose (which did not hurt surprisingly) and then auctioning off the pieces and I noticed all of them were going for three times or more from the minimum price. This surprised me as auctions I have been to before some stuff just would not get minimum or that was all. This continued and he sold off everything, except a couple of pieces.
As the auction concluded, he reached at me one last time, pulled out a painting, and handed it to me. It was an inexpensive painting that I had looked at several times. He told that it was my gift for having been his assistant.
I commented that I had never seen a auctioneer be a magician in doing an auction. He looked at me and said the show is a big part of why I am successful. People will pay a lot more for a painting if they see a show with it, in this case coming out your nose, than just for the painting. They got a show with the bidding and had a good time. I walked away impressed and still rubbing my nose of how did he get a sixteen by twenty inch framed painting out of it.
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