Curious Objects: Stuart Feld on how the antiques world has changed with the advent of the internet

Benjamin Miller

Benjamin Miller Curious Objects

Benjamin Miller, Host of Curious Objects & the stories behind them

In the second episode The Magazine ANTIQUES’ podcast Curious Objects, host Benjamin Miller talked to Stuart Feld, head of the New York art and antiques gallery Hirschl & Adler, about the intricate design and involved provenance of an American neoclassical linen press, as well as Feld’s own eminent career. In this excerpt, Feld responds to Miller’s question about how the Internet has affected collectors and buyers.

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Stuart Feld, Courtesy Hirschl & Adler

“We have our own website, and we are constantly updating it and making it better. I must say, I think it serves us much more as an advertisement than it does as a specific selling tool. Having said that, we do sell something—occasionally—that way, and we also sell something—occasionally—via a site like 1stdibs. But I think [our website is] much more valuable to us as a window onto what we do, and to encourage people to make a visit, to call us and find out what we have in a certain field, and so on.

At the other end of the spectrum, many auction houses who used to produce catalogs don’t do so so much anymore, but their sales are documented quite effectively online, and I do spend a certain amount of my time looking at specific sites. I don’t have the time just to search the Internet looking at random things, but if I have reason to think that a specific auction might be interesting I will try to to review the catalog online.”