Buying Art With Emotion

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Kosta Boda, a glass gallery in Sweden, recently awarded three artworks to the highest emotional bidder in an ‘Auction Based on Emotion’. The three pieces, valued between €1,900 and €15,000, were auctioned off during a one-time event where no money was exchanged – just heart beats and sweat.

None of the works were on display during the auction. So you had no idea what you were there to buy. The pieces up for grabs were each partitioned in make-shift rooms and concealed by a cloth laid over them. Each bidder was brought individually into each room, seated in front of the covered art, had sensors placed on the fingers of their right hand and had headphones placed over their ears.

At this point the piece had its great reveal for all of 60 seconds. In this time the bidder’s heart rate and hand sweat were monitored. After the time was up, the bidder was ushered to the next piece and the process was repeated again for the other 303 participants. The person who had the greatest emotional reaction to the piece took it home to be appreciated day after day. A fabulous idea. You can watch the experience here.

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Kevin Roberts

Kevin Roberts is founder of Red Rose Consulting; business leader and educator; author and speaker; adviser on marketing, creative thinking and leadership.


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