Buying Privately

Through private sales and selling exhibitions, Sotheby’s connects buyers and sellers of great works of art outside of the auction room.

HOW CAN I FIND OUT WHAT IS CURRENTLY FOR SALE?

- Selling exhibitions are held regularly throughout Sotheby’s worldwide locations. View our online schedule of upcoming sales.

- Sotheby’s Diamonds offers pieces from its collection as well as custom-made jewellery and access to important stones. Visit Sotheby’s Diamonds.

- Sotheby’s Wine can be purchased either through our retail store located in our New York headquarters or on the Sotheby's Wine website.

- Sotheby’s is able to source items specifically for you, as described in the question below.

 

WHO CAN I CONTACT FOR HELP IN ACQUIRING AN OBJECT OR WORK OF ART?

Contact the Sotheby’s specialist most relevant for the property you wish to acquire. For a full listing of Sotheby’s specialists, view our contacts page. If you aren’t sure which category to select, or if you have a general enquiry about buying privately, email us at privatesales@sothebys.com.

Although Sotheby’s endeavors to accommodate all requests, please note that bespoke services are generally provided for transactions of $100,000 or greater.

 

HOW WILL YOU FIND THE OBJECT OR WORK I AM LOOKING TO ACQUIRE?

Sotheby’s close relationships with the most important collectors and collections gives us unparalleled access to procure exceptional objects and works of art on your behalf.

 

HOW DOES THE LEVEL OF DISCRETION IN A PRIVATE SALE DIFFER FROM THAT OF AN AUCTION?

We never disclose the identity of a buyer unless it is the express wish of the client to publicise their identity. While Sotheby’s releases auction prices to the public, all aspects of a private sale are kept in the strictest confidence.

 

CAN I BUY WORKS DIRECTLY FROM A SELLING EXHIBITION?

Yes. Each selling exhibition has a list of Sotheby’s contacts who can provide pricing and confirm the availability of works. On the selling exhibitions page, click on the relevant exhibition to find contact details.

 

ARE PRIVATE SALES CONDUCTED IN ALL SOTHEBY'S LOCATIONS?

Yes. Sotheby’s specialists are engaged with clients worldwide and will utilise our global network to assist you in acquiring the finest objects specific to your needs.

 

HOW QUICKLY COULD YOU IDENTIFY PROPERTY THAT CLOSELY MATCHES MY SPECIFICATIONS?

We will do our utmost to quickly locate the item or items that best meet your needs, but depending on the rarity and uniqueness of the object, the timing may vary. Our specialists will continue to identify possible private sale opportunities until your requirements have been met.

 

HOW DO I PAY FOR MY PURCHASE?

As soon as the sale has been processed, the post-sale service team will send you an invoice and a shipping quote based on your shipping preferences. You can pay by bank transfer, cheque or cash (subject to certain restrictions and legal limits). Certain credit cards are accepted at select Sotheby’s locations. Payment must be sent from the invoiced party and not from a third party. We will also assist you through the paperwork and shipping processes, and other logistical details needed to finalise your purchase.

 

HOW CAN I LEARN MORE ABOUT SOTHEBY’S PRIVATE SALES?

Email us at privatesales@sothebys.com.