AIPAD Talks 'Donation Conversation' will cover the basics of donating works to an institution. The how and where to start, who to talk to (i.e., curators, consultants, gallerists, appraisers), how to obtain an appraisal, and what type of appraisal is needed. Our goal is to provide the knowledge needed to move forward with a donation and remove any intimidation and confusion from the process.
About Our Panelists:
Denise Bethel, formerly Chairman, Photographs Americas, Sotheby’s New York, has been involved in the fine art photography market for over 40 years. She began her career at Swann Galleries in 1980 and moved to Sotheby’s in 1990, where she rose from Senior Specialist in photographs to Chairman of the department in her 25 years there. In her long auction career, she set records in a host of categories, among them the record for any photographs auction worldwide, 175 Masterworks to Celebrate 175 Years of Photography, at $21.3 million, in December 2014. While at Sotheby’s, she orchestrated the sale of eight classic photographs that sold at auction for $1 million or more, and she wielded the gavel for all of them. One of these, Edward Steichen’s The Pond—Moonlight, at $2.93 million in 2006, was until 2017 a world record for any classic photograph at auction. She has seen photography change from a camera-club collectible to a legitimate category of fine art and is proud to have played a part in that evolution.
Bethel is now an independent advisor, lecturer, appraiser, and writer based in Manhattan. The job she has enjoyed most since leaving Sotheby’s is helping her clients give things away.
Virginia Heckert has been a curator in the Department of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA, since 2005, where she served as department head from 2014 to 2018. In addition to organizing exhibitions on Bernd and Hilla Becher, Mario Giacomelli, Irving Penn, Sigmar Polke, Ed Ruscha, and August Sander from the permanent collection, she has collaborated on presentations of the photographs of Lyonel Feininger and the Bauhaus and Ray K. Metzker and the Institute of Design. Her Light, Paper, Process: Reinventing Photography (2015) and Cut! Paper Play in Contemporary Photography (2018) exhibitions addressed the materiality of contemporary approaches to the medium of photography.
Prior to joining the Getty Museum, Virginia was the inaugural Curator of Photography at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, FL (2001-2005). She received her PhD from Columbia University, New York, with a dissertation on the German modernist photographer Albert Renger-Patzsch, about whom she has written extensively. She has contributed essays to numerous publications, most recently on the work of photographers John Chiara, scott b. davis, Michael Flomen, and Kunié Sugiura.
Starting as a computer consultant to Penelope Dixon Associates over twenty five years ago, Edward Yee became increasingly involved with photographic collection management and eventually appraisals. While working on a myriad of appraisal projects, he specializes in the valuation of large archives & estates, as well as negatives, transparencies, and copyright. Over the course of his career he has appraised some of the largest and most widely known photographic archives in existence including the BlackStar and Keystone Montreal archives, each containing over 300,000 photographs, as well the archives of National Geographic and Magnum, among many others. In 2019, Edward became President of Penelope Dixon & Associates, following his position as Vice-President since 2003. He is a board member of the Appraisers Association of America where he is also certified in appraisals of photography.