Going once, going twice...and SOLD! / by Sarvin Haghighi


And finally the day I was so looking forward to arrived.  The Magic of Persia Nowruz Auction Gala benefit in Dubai which was held on Iranian new years - March 21st 2015 - at Emirates Towers. The setting was beautiful and I was accompanied by my number one fan, my husband.   We were welcomed by champagne to the salon where all the artworks were on display.

There were so many beautiful artworks many by famous artists and some by emerging and other well - established artists.  Shirley Elghanian - Founder of the MOP organization - started the ceremony welcoming the artists, followed by a beautiful and touching video speech by Empress Farah Pahlavi - Former Queen of Iran - It was so unreal to be within so many amazing artists in such an amazing atmosphere. The program continued with a speech by HE Sheikh Narayan Bin Mubarak Al Nahayan - UAE's Head Minister of Culture, Youth and Social Development - and then the Christie's auctioneer stepped up and started the auctions. My painting was the 5th one of the auction list. I felt like I couldn't breath for a long time.  I noticed the start of bidding prices for most of the art works had been lowered compared to the suggested bid in the program.  My painting was one of the few that held its original bid price.
All prices mentioned in the catalogue are based on MOP and the artists suggested value but ultimately Christie's has say on the starting bid . Nervously, I saw my piece at a glance being brought up to the stage. The auctioneer started by mentioning the start bid of 2000 USD.. there was a few seconds of silence - to me it was much longer - and then the bidding started. I still couldn't breath and once I heard the word "SOLD" I realized it was sold for $6,000 USD. I was still in shock and could hardly hear my husband congratulating me...
As the auction continued we also realized that most of the pieces had an average of 20% increase between the start of bidding price and the selling price, whereas I  had a 300% increase.  At that moment it dawned on me how well my piece had performed.   This was the best start of the year I could have asked for. The ceremony continued with the performance of Shahram Shabpareh who is a legend in Iranian Rock music. I could not stop smiling the whole night. My piece was safe, with someone who appreciates it...this was the best Nowruz gift ever...