Born: Richmond, VA, 1946, lives in New York, married with 2 children
Educated: Northwestern University; B.A. University
of Illinois, Champaign, Cum Laude
- Merrill Chase Galleries, Oakbrook, Illinois.
As assistant to Mr. Chase, I was charged with all gallery
functions from dusting to bookkeeping to selling art. Merrill
Chase was one of the foremost commercial galleries in the
country. This experience taught me well about the evils
of the commercial art market. I saw worthless Renoir restrike
etchings touted as investments that would "Put your kids through
college". I saw Dali fakes being sold as the "greatest investment
in the world." I saw first-hand how the people in this
part of the art business manipulate the truth and just
miss committing fraud in sales tactics.
- 1975 - Landfall Press. Chicago, Illinois
As the primary sales person for Landfall Press, one of the
first and finest lithography workshops in the country, I was
a dedicated, passionate participant in the growth of the contemporary
print market which started in the early 70's. Landfall was
a publisher and printer of lithographs by important artists
of the time, from Philip Pearlstein, to Sol LeWitt, to Christo.
My job was to travel around the country and the world, carrying
over 50 pounds of artist's proofs, and sell these prints to
museums, collectors, and other galleries. All this on a travel
budget that allowed me the equivalent of McDonald's three
times a day and Motel 6 accommodations. But we werel working
for art and not financial windfall. I felt honored to be able
to work with artists, and do what I could to support the printmaking
- Kathryn Markel Fine Arts - New York, NY.
For ten years, I owned a public gallery on 57th Street that
specialized in works on paper - both original prints and unique
works of art on paper such as watercolor, collage, and pastel.
However, as overhead went up in the early 80's, I couldn't
force a commensurate rise in the prices of my works on paper
by emerging artists that I sold, and had to close my public
space. The experience taught me that if you wish to sell relatively
inexpensive works of art, you must invent another business
model that doesn't involve the high overhead of a public New
York Gallery, or, if you need to have an expensive gallery,
you must sell expensive works.
Markel/Sears Works on Paper
In 1985, Macie Sears, my partner, and I started this new business
model based on selling wonderful, but well-priced works on
paper by emerging artists with minimal overhead. We were primarily
open by appointment, either in our own homes or our small
space on Broadway and Prince Street. Since our prices were
low and we marketed primarily to corporations, which buy large
numbers of works at a time, Markel/Sears proved a success.
- Kathryn Markel Fine Arts Reopens -
On the 15th of June, Kathryn Markel Fine Arts reopend at
560 Broadway. Again, specializing in works on paper with
the addition of paintings by the young avant-garde.
As you can see, I've been selling art for over 30 years.
It's a wonderful life! I count among my best friends my comrades
from the early days. We all look at each other in amazement
and say, "I remember when that Jasper Johns, Lichtenstein,
etc., was only $100, $200." The current rise in prices
makes us all feel very old."