Connoisseurship is expert knowledge and training in a particular field, such as antiques, fine art, celebrity properties, collections or 19th Century French Antiques. It can be a broad category like “California Plein Air or American Paintings” or a specialty field like “18th Century French Porcelain.” This expertise comes from study, education, knowledge of and familiarity with objects in a given specialty area.
Many individuals, collectors, dealers, and gallery owners are connoisseurs of a particular subject specialty and may know more about the detail, quality and importance of their chosen items than any other professional “expert” but when an appraisal is required connoisseurship is only part of the required knowledge. The other vital element to a valuation is the understanding and application of appraisal theory.
To be a Professional Appraiser requires years of education, training, experience and professional development in personal property appraisals. It requires strict adherence to ethical standards to be accepted into a professional appraisal society as an accredited member. Not everyone is qualified for the job.
Yvonne and her staff of intern appraisers have expertise and experience in:
- Fine Art – paintings, watercolors, gouache
- Decorative Arts – porcelains, bronze, silver, pottery
- California Plein Air Paintings
- 19th and 20th century French antiques
- Antique and fine furniture
- Collections and unique items
- Fine and costume jewelry
- Toys and dolls
- Textiles – tapestry, vintage clothing, hooked rugs
- Oriental rugs
- Arms and armor
- Rock and Roll Memorabilia
- Vintage Amplifiers
- Vintage and Contemporary Musical Instruments
- Celebrity Properties and Memorabilia
Types of Value for Intended Uses
There are different types of value for different intended uses and therefore must be a consideration of the most appropriate market for an item depending on the appraisal assignment.
The concept of highest and best use must be evaluated. Laws differ from state to state and the appraisal has to adhere to your state’s law. Someone who is not trained in appraisal methodology will not know how to consider all of these factors. The following basic appraisal errors can be avoided if you contract the services of a qualified appraiser.
- A gallery will quote a retail price for a painting which would not be appropriate for an estate tax or a non-cash charitable contribution.
- An auction house sales result is most likely not the appropriate value for insurance coverage.
- Insurance replacement value is not the proper value for federal estate tax purposes.
- Fair market value is not the proper value for bankruptcy appraisals.
- Liquidation value is not appropriate for insurance replacement riders.
- A consultation for disposition requires use of marketable cash value, not fair market value.
- Insurance claim settlement values will vary according to the terms of the individual insurance contract.