I recently went on my first real cruise (not counting a couple of half day trips on a gambling boat). It was aboard a Carnival Cruise ship.
Some of you serious art collectors are no doubt going to laugh, but, to make a long story short, I went to an art auction on board where I bought one of a series of prints on canvas (I think that is what it is called in the art world) of a painting by John Kelly called Nocturne.
It's the first art auction I've ever been to. It had a nice gold frame and I liked the subject and the way it was painted. Supposedly only 195 copies exist of this print. It's of a merchant ship shown from the stern with what looks like two Chinese junks to the port side of it. The signature in the corner by Kelly is supposed to be authentic and original and everything.
Anyway, I bought it for over $500! And that was one of the cheaper paintings there! I was told at the auction by the auctioneer of what a fine maritime artist John Kelly is and that the painting is actually worth up to $2000 in the art world!
Being all wide eyed and still wet behind the ears I went ahead and "took the plunge". So, I just got back from the cruise and looked the piece up on the Internet and found a copy of it at some place called Lori's Art Gallery on the Internet for $175 unframed.
Did I really get such a great deal on this painting? Is such a painting really worth up to $2000? I'm not really looking to sell the painting. I just like the looks of it and would like to hang it in the living room. It would be nice to be able to brag about what a fine painting it is and everything and what a great deal I got on it, but for over $500 I'm now wondering if I really got a greater bargain than I could have gotten anywhere else.
I assume paying fair market value for something is not a bad thing but being told it is worth thousands of dollars when it isn't just seems sort of wrong. And it has been a kind of let down.