"The Oldie is an incredible magazine - perhaps the best magazine in the world right now" Graydon Carter, founder of Air Mail and former Editor of Vanity Fair

Subscribe to the Oldie and get a free cartoon book


How to buy a picture - Huon Mallalieu

Features | By Huon Mallalieu

Sold! L S Lowry’s The Auction at Sotheby’s, London, 19th October 2021. It sold for £2.1m (£2.6m with buyer’s premium and fees)

Want to buy or sell a painting but aren’t sure how to do it? The Oldie’s exhibitions correspondent, Huon Mallalieu, has the answer

How much time have you got? Picture-buying can take a minute – or a lifetime. Nearly 40 years ago, I wrote a book on this subject. Not a great book but, when I look at it now, it seems rather better than I expected. One of the more sensible tips for a tyro buyer was ‘The first person to turn to for advice when you are offered a picture is yourself. If you like it so much that questions of exact authorship, subject, price, condition and provenance are irrelevant, then no more need be said; go ahead and buy it. If not, you owe it to yourself to find out as much as possible before parting with your money.’ ...

I’m afraid this isn’t one of our six free articles available in full, which are set out in the first two rows of the ‘Magazine’ page.
Please click here to find them.

To buy a digital version of this issue for just £1.99, click here