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How to Get an Artwork Appraised during a Pandemic


Alina Cohen for Artsy

July 23, 2020

Excerpt from the article

Claire Marmion, Head of PURE Art Services, said she’s been surprised by how much of the business has seamlessly moved online. Her team can conduct site visits virtually, via Zoom, to explore a home and “map out all the exposures around a collection.”

Yet some types of appraisals specifically require on-site visits. In-person examinations are often a must if you want to secure a bank loan based on an artwork’s value, for example. According to Marmion, “in theory,” the Internal Revenue Service itself often requires on-site visits.

“In a claims scenario, it’s very difficult to respond and appraise without site verification,” she added. “You’re trying to figure out what artwork looked like before and after an event.” For insurance to pay out after a fire or other disaster, specialists must examine objects in person. In the case of estate appraisals, which can determine tax filing data, Marmion noted that assessments may be done virtually, with the assumption that qualified appraisers will follow up with an on-site visit at a later date.

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