*** Note posted November 25, 2000: Just after this review first appeared in October 2000 it came to our attention that the ADEC/Art Price Group is engaging in questionable tactics in order to improve their positioning on major search engines. Read Alert: Artprice.com Clogs Search Engines With "Decoy" Websites to find out more. ***
Fine Art, January 1987/March 2000 , the new two-CD-ROM set from artprice.com S. A. , contains 2,000,000 auction records for works of art by 172,000 artists sold by hundreds of international auction houses between January 1987 and March 2000. This year's version uses a different interface than last year's and installing it on your computer can be a bit tricky, but once it's up and running, it's great. Just make sure you follow all instructions for installation and usage exactly as they are written.
One problem with last year's CD-ROM was speed. Bringing up price results of more popular artists with hundreds of auction records took quite a while. This year's CD-ROM has solved that problem and greatly reduced the wait-- hundreds of records come up in a matter of seconds. Another nice addition is a button-click function which rapidly arranges price results in either ascending or descending order by dollar amounts. The button-click function that arranges works of art from either latest-to-earliest or earliest-to-latest examples by date the artist produced them is nice to have, but only comes in handy on occasion.
The most significant addition to Fine Art, January 1987/March 2000 is the ability to link directly from the CD-ROM results displayed on your computer screen to the artprice.com online database. By doing so, you can see whether additional works by whatever artist you are researching have been sold at auction since March 2000. Results in the online database are displayed chronologically by date of sale with each entry showing the title of the art, dimensions, and medium. This information can be accessed at no charge, but you have to pay in order to see the selling prices. For more information on how the artprice.com online database works, see Two Online Art Resources: Artprice.com and Artstar.com .
A function that's unfortunately missing from Fine Art, January 1987/March 2000 is one that arranges works by date of sale from earliest to most recent or visa versa. This makes analyzing trends in an artist's selling prices over time difficult. Each individual result must be clicked on separately in order to find out when it sold-- very time consuming.
Overall, the artprice.com S. A. two-CD-ROM set is an excellent tool for researching auction sales results for paintings, watercolors, prints, posters, sculptures, drawings, tapestries, ceramics, and miniatures. We use it regularly here at ArtBusiness.com and we highly recommend it for anyone who does regular art price research. For those of you who prefer your auction records in the traditional book form, artprice.com's ADEC Art Price Annual & Falk's Art Price Index 2000 contains over 200,000 price results from hundreds of international auction sales taking place during 1999 and into the beginning of 2000.
Fine Art, January 1987/March 2000 , 2-CD-ROM set, artprice.com S.A., St.-Romain-au-Mont-d'Or, France, 2000, $399.
ADEC Art Price Annual & Falk's Art Price Index 2000 , artprice.com S.A., St.-Romain-au-Mont-d'Or, France, 2000, hardbound, 2,793 pages, 8 3/4 by 11 5/8 inches, $119.
Both references are available from Dealer's Choice Books , P. O. Box 710, Land 'O Lakes, FL 34639 or call 1.800.ART.AMER.