Encore Magazine December 2016

Page 19

encore Enterprise

Evaluating Value

Kendra Eberts takes an appraising view of art by

Olga Bonfiglio


The art of art appraisal has changed a lot, thanks to technology, she says. “There are hundreds of art appraisers all over the country who conduct appraisals from about 60,000 categories of paintings, sculpture, pottery, furniture, etc.,” she says. “In pre-eBay days there were only 600 popular categories.” When Eberts is working to put a value on a collection, she relies on set systems that have protocols, uniform standards of professional appraisal practice and, of course, regulations for IRS tax purposes. Such work requires much research. That’s because the art market isn’t static. It moves with changes in taste and overall economic trends. Eberts, however, isn’t afraid to admit that she doesn’t know everything about every category of art. “Appraisers and collectors alike develop areas of specialization, and my experience began with photographs and fine-art prints. I’ve built Art appraiser Kendra Eberts evaluates the value of a variety of fine art, funriture and decorative items.

Brian Powers

eople have collected artistic objects since antiquity, but who tells them if their collections are worth more than sentimental value? That’s Kendra Eberts’ job. Eberts, the owner of Key Art Group, is one of a handful of art appraisers in southwestern Michigan. She researches and establishes the value of fine art, furniture and decorative items for insurance and IRS-related purposes, such as estate-tax filing and non-cash charitable contributions. She also helps collectors by providing market evaluations and collectionmanagement services. In addition, she helps artists with the business side of their art career by managing their inventory, doing marketing and providing guidance about gallery relationships. Eberts grew up in Kalamazoo and studied art and art history at Kalamazoo College. She received a certificate in appraisal studies in fine and decorative arts through New York University after earning a master’s degree in fine and decorative art from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. She returned to Kalamazoo and opened her business in 2012.

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