Speakers

Saturday, March 18, 2023

9:15AM - 10:15AM       MORNING GENERAL SESSION #1    

Speaker:  Kelly Crow

Title:  Current Market Disrupters

Biography:  Kelly Crow is a staff reporter covering the art market for The Wall Street Journal. She reports on sales at auction houses including Sotheby’s and Christie’s as well as analyzes the funding and art-buying activities of the world’s major museums, art fairs, artists and collectors around the world. Kelly has covered the art market for the Journal since 2006.  She won a Front Page Award from the Newswomen's Club of New York in 2009 for her profile of an FBI officer who recovers stolen art and a Deadline Club Award for Arts Reporting in 2021 from the New York chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for her coverage of the digital-art boom.

Before joining the Journal in 2005, she wrote for the New York Times, based at the City desk, where she helped cover city government, neighborhoods and the Sept. 11 terrorist attack. She also helped Pulitzer-Prize winner James B. Stewart report DisneyWar, a 2005 nonfiction narrative about the Walt Disney Company during Michael Eisner’s final years as CEO.


10:15AM - 11:15AM       MORNING GENERAL SESSION #2    

Speaker:  Robert Edsel

Title:  Monuments Men and Women, Looted Art and Artifacts

Robert M. Edsel, #1 New York Times bestselling author, and Founder and Chairman of the Monuments Men and Women Foundation, will discuss the history of the Monuments Men and Women who, during World War II, located and returned more than four million stolen cultural objects to the countries from which they had been taken. The Monuments Men and Women Foundation continues their mission today locating and returning to rightful owners works of art and other cultural objects that lie hidden in attics, basements, and vaults, items that will continue to surface with greater frequency as the remaining members of the Greatest Generation pass.

Biography:  Robert Edsel is recognized as one of the world’s foremost advocates for art preservation and the recovery of cultural treasures missing since World War II. The last twenty years of his life have been dedicated to the meticulous research of the Monuments Men and Women, the soldier-scholars who helped save so many of the world’s great art and cultural treasures from the destruction of war and theft by the Nazis. In the course of his work, Mr. Edsel has located and interviewed twenty-one Monuments Officers including three Monuments Women, and dozens of family members. Previously, Mr. Edsel had a successful sixteen-year career as Founder and Chairman of Gemini Exploration, an oil and gas exploration company that pioneered the use of horizontal drilling technology in the early 1990’s.


 11:45AM - 12:45PM       CONCURRENT MORNING BREAKOUT SESSIONS    

Fine Art Presentation -- Speaker:  John Guess, Houston Museum of African American Culture

Title:  Trends in the Market for African American Art

Biography:  John Guess, Jr. is the voice and architect behind the resurgence of the Houston Museum of African American Culture, where he currently serves as Chief Executive Officer. John has organized and managed HMAAC's exhibitions schedules since 2014, and has curated well received and reviewed exhibitions that have included Sandra Bland, The Abolitionists, Revelation of Goddesses: Retrospective of Eleanor Merritt, The Art of Malick Sidibe, Indifference, Riding The Tiger: The Art of Berg Long, Jr., Kingdom of Gold: The Photography of Ellen Kaplowitz, Close to Home: Latinx Art and Identity 2.0, etc. John also organized two national symposia.in collaboration with the Johns Hopkins Center for Africana Studies; The African Presence in Mexico and Afropolitans.


Antiques, Furnishings and Decorative Arts  --  Speaker:  Brent Lewis, Heritage Auctions

Title:  Appraising Design: A Style Driven Market

There have always been passionate collectors of design, who have shaped the market for 20th century and contemporary furniture and objects. In today’s market, those collectors are joined by an ever-broadening mix of interior designers, enthusiasts and personal decorators, leading to an increasingly strong yet malleable marketplace. How has this affected values, and how can values be understood with this in mind.

Biography: Brent Lewis is an art and design specialist based in Los Angeles and the director of design for Heritage Auctions.   He has spent over twenty years in the auction business, working with both East and West Coast firms as a specialist and auctioneer.  In his role at Heritage, Brent oversees the department of 20th Century and Contemporary Design, focusing on building Heritage’s market in mid-century and postwar design.


Gem & Jewelry Presentation  --  Speaker:  Lauren Abramowitz, Heritage Appraisers

Title:  Tiffany and Co. Identification / Bird on a Rock: An Insiders Guide to Preparing a Blue Box Appraisal

With the increasing amount of goods on the market from Tiffany and Co. it is important to understand what the company can do, will do, and will not do for merchandise that needs to be appraised. The company has taken the stance of not authenticating jewelry and holloware and under certain circumstances may provide a client with an appraisal. Since their services are limited, it behooves us to be able to recognize characteristics of these items in order to provide due diligence, accuracy, and confidence for your clientele. Tiffany and Co. is one of a few jewelers that insurance companies will accept purchase receipt information without formal outside evaluation. This is due to the diamond reports given at time of sale in reference to their ISO certified chain of custody and internal gem lab processes.

 Biography: Lauren Kalman Abramowitz was born in New York and her accent can still be heard in several words even though she has been in Arizona since 1998.Her extensive jewelry career includes the opening of the Arizona locations of Tiffany & Company which include Scottsdale and Tucson. Within the 10 years of experience with Tiffany and Company, Lauren was an award-winning and Gallop poll recognized employee.


2:00PM - 3:00PM       AFTERNOON GENERAL SESSION #3    

Speaker:  Scott Hale, 

Title People Don't Call A Picasso A Spanish Painting:  Recontextualizing Indigenous Art of North America

Explore the history and development of collecting Native American/First Nations art.  Specifically, it examines the market for such objects, the evolving theories and practices of collecting, and the shifting legal landscape, including considerations of natural resources, forgeries, repatriation, economic development, and tribal nations sovereignty. 

Biography:  Scott Hale is a third-generation art & wine curator, appraiser & advisor. Scott’s grandfather, Leonard Atkison, was a trading post and gallery owner, and Scott's mother, Cindy Hale, is a former museum curator, and as some of you may remember, was a long-time ISA appraiser, (who is now enjoying her retirement in Santa Fe).

Scott is a graduate of Trinity University in San Antonio and The University of Oklahoma where he pursued his masters and doctoral studies, teaching for over ten years in the English Department, Media/Film and Video Studies Department, Native American Studies Department , lecturing in the School of Visual Arts and Art History, as well as at Gilcrease MuseumNational Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (Cowboy Hall of Fame)Oklahoma City Museum of ArtFred Jones Jr. Museum of ArtMuseum of Indian Arts and Culture, and The Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian. Scott has also published in books and periodicals including: American Indian Portraits, First American Art Magazine, The Antique Tribal Art Dealers Association's News, Museum Anthropology Review, Photograph Collector's Guide, World Literature Today, and was featured in Native American Art Magazine.  He is the former director of the Brett Weston Archive, and has curated several museum exhibitions including the traveling retrospective, “Brett Weston: Out of the Shadow.”  Scott also has extensive education and experience in fine wines, earning a Level 2 award, with Merit, from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust and the Napa Valley Wine Academy.


3:30PM - 4:30PM       CONCURRENT AFTERNOON BREAKOUT SESSIONS    

Fine Art Presentation  --  Speaker:  Mari Carmen Ramirez

Title:  Latin American Market, 1980’s - Present

Biography: Mari Carmen is a Puerto Rican curator and the Wortham Curator of Latin American Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She is considered the foremost expert on Latin American art in the world. Most recently Ms. Carmen spoke at the 2022 Armory Show Curatorial Leadership Summit.


Antiques, Furnishings and Decorative Arts  --  Speaker: Brahm Wachter, Sotheby's

Title:  Untying the Sneaker Market

Join us to explore the expansive sneaker market, from Bape to Nike and beyond. Wachter will discuss why it’s necessary to keep current on market trends, the celebrity impact, the importance of value characteristics and how to know if a collection warrants the expertise of a specialist. 

Biography:  Brahm Wachter joined the Sotheby’s Luxury Accessories & Collectables Department in New York in 2019, and transferred to the Los Angeles office in December of 2020. He currently works as Sotheby’s Head of Streetwear and Modern Collectibles.  Mr. Wachter is additionally largely responsible for Sotheby’s expansion into the sneaker and sports memorabilia spaces, as well as various other initiatives that aim to develop new categories and audiences within the company.

Mr. Wachter is a graduate of New York University’s Stern School of Business receiving a Masters of Business Administration with specializations in Strategy and Marketing, and was the winner of the school’s UPS GBA merit-based scholarship for academic achievements. He received his Bachelor of Arts at Brandeis University and majored in Business and History.


Gem & Jewelry Presentation  --  Speaker:  Diane Batista, Rago/Wright LLC

Title: The Jewelry of David Webb, An Auction and Archivist Perspective

Dianne Batista has a unique perspective of David Webb jewelry for appraisers. Her experience at auction and as archivist at David Webb enable her to share a unique perspective. The history of Webb, his design stories, and David Webb at retail vs the second hand market will all be discussed.

Biography: Dianne Batista is Director of Jewelry and Watches and Sr. Specialist at Rago / Wright auction houses. Prior to joining Rago, she was an independent consultant working as Archive Manager at David Webb. With over 30 years of experience in the industry, she has held positions as a Senior Jewelry Specialist at Christie’s and later as a consultant. In the retail jewelry sector, she was the US Head of Dior Fine Jewelry and Cinta Jewelry Director at John Hardy. She has lectured extensively and appeared as an original jewelry expert on PBS's Antiques Roadshow. Find her on Instagram @nycdianne. 


Sunday, March 19, 2023

9:30AM - 10:30AM       MORNING GENERAL SESSION #1    

Speaker: Jake Archer, FBI Art Crime Team

Title: Frauds & Forgeries: Considerations for Appraisers Dealing with Art and Cultural Property

Appraisers evaluating fine art and cultural property may encounter forgeries and fraudulent activity pursuant to their work. How such situations are handled may have significant implications for all parties involved. This presentation will help to contextualize a range of possible scenarios--from negligent behavior to criminal conduct--and suggest methods and practices enabling proper and ethical responses for appraisers. This presentation will also highlight the mission and capabilities of the FBI Art Crime Team and provide additional art crime-related information that may benefit conference attendees. 

Biography:  Jake Archer is a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is assigned to the Philadelphia Division. SA Archer is a member of both the FBI's Art Crime Team and Evidence Response Team. SA Archer conducts art and cultural property-related investigations, repatriations, and training domestically and internationally. Prior to his service with the FBI, SA Archer was an associate attorney with a private law firm in New Jersey. SA Archer earned a law degree from Seton Hall University School of Law and a master’s degree in Art History - Cultural Heritage and Preservation Studies from Rutgers University. While at Rutgers, SA Archer interned at the conservation laboratory at the Princeton University Art Museum and authored a thesis about the development of care for art and artifacts subjected to the law enforcement process. SA Archer is a member of the United States Cultural Heritage Coordinating Committee and Chair of its Technology Working Group, which is based in Washington, D.C. and coordinates diplomatic and law enforcement efforts to combat antiquities trafficking, disrupt trafficking networks, and protect against the looting and destruction of cultural property around the world.


10:30AM - 11:30AM       CONCURRENT MORNING BREAKOUT SESSIONS    

Fine Art Presentation  --  Speaker:  Rebekah Bowling, Phillips Auctioneers

Title:  Primary and Auction Markets; The Lines Once Defined are Now Blurred

Rebekah Bowling will discuss the ultra-contemporary market, think wet paint promises and donations, and provenance-building pre-offering activities. The delicate relationships between artists, gallerists, and the auction house. ISA’s Isabelle Weise and Rebekah Bowling will have a back-and-forth discussion about these elusive super-contemporary markets that once fell across a definitive border of primary gallery sales versus auction sales, and that line has now blurred. The market activity of private sales and auction activity from 2020 to the present has seen multiple trend changes and with Bowling’s expertise and experience, she will talk us through this uncharted territory of the ultra-modern market.  Bowling will also highlight some of the market's hottest artists to watch today.

Biography:  Rebekah Bowling is a Senior Specialist and Head of 21st Century Art in Phillips’ 20th Century & Contemporary Art Department.  During her tenure at Phillips, Rebekah has led fourteen day and mid-season sales, including the highest grossing Day Sale in Phillips’ history in November 2019. She was also responsible for handling the sale of Phillips’ first NFT – Mad Dog Jones’ Replicator, which realized over $4 million – and has continued to achieve strong results in this space. With expertise in the markets of emerging artists, she oversees the company’s auction and private sale strategy for works from this category. 

Rebekah joined Phillips in 2015 after holding positions at Stuart Shave/Modern Art in London and Andrea Rosen Gallery in New York. She received her BA in Art History from the University of Virginia and her MA in Art Business from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art.


Antiques, Furnishings and Decorative Arts  --  Speaker: Ferdinand Hampson, Ferdinand Hampson LLC

Title: Evolution Innovation and Market Realities of Contemporary Glass

This presentation will give a brief history of the development of studio glass internationally, the artists who have made the greatest contributions and an examination of the market today.

Biography:  Mr. Hampson has lectured on the subject of contemporary glass extensively in Europe, Asia and the North America and has written numerous magazine articles and catalogues on the subject. Through Habatat Galleries he has published the largest body of work on Studio Glass in the world.  For over 40 years Mr. Hampson has been a consultant to many appraisers in the field of studio glass, before forming his own company. He has evaluated many of the noted glass collection in the U.S. and continues to act as a consultant to auction houses.

Mr. Hampson currently is on the board of the Creative Glass Center of America, New Jersey and the Arthur Secunda Museum, Michigan. He serves as Adjunct Curator for the Fort Wayne Museum, Indiana and consultant to Habatat Galleries.


Gem & Jewelry Presentation  --  Speaker:  Ken Specht

Title: Watch History & the Current Market of Luxury Watches

Ken Specht’s “ Watch History and the Current Market of Luxury Watches” talk covers the dramatic changes in the Luxury Watch Market in the past year. One minute the “Batman” Rolex is soaring, next it falls from the heights. The Luxury Watch market has been up and down like a yo yo over the past several years.  Ken Specht, an icon in the watch industry, has his thumb on the pulse of luxury watches.  His captivating presentation is both exciting and chock full of the information appraisers need to know.    

Biography:  Ken is an active member of The National Association of Watch & Clock Collectors. A charter member of both the International Watch & Jewelers Guild and Watch Floor Traders Association.  Ken established the Specht Sheet watch pricing guide 31 years ago and co-authored several horology books. Established the first serial production numbers dating system for Rolex Oyster watches.  Ken serves as an expert witness in both Federal and State Courts and valued watches for the US Customs & Drug Enforcement Agency.


1:00PM - 2:00PM       AFTERNOON GENERAL SESSION #1    

Speaker:  Denise Peterson, Peterson ADR

Title:  Translating Expertise to English: Communicating the way your audience needs to hear it.

A mediator’s core skill set involves communicating complicated concepts on behalf of parties in a way that makes sense and moves a case forward.  Ms. Peterson will provide a framework for enabling audiences to understand the concepts being communicated, from understanding the speaker’s role to the audience’s needs. Identifying when communication disconnects are occurring, or as one of Ms. Peterson’s early professors called “when the audience is looking at you with greyed-out eyes.”

Biography:  Ms. Peterson provides practical, pragmatic mediation services for state and federal civil cases. Ms. Peterson has arbitrated over 150 cases to date as chair, panel member, or sole arbitrator, including ad-hoc cases.  She is a sought-after educator on mediation, arbitration, and ethics.  Ms. Peterson serves as an adjunct clinical professor for the alternative dispute resolution program as part of the Frank Evans Center at the South Texas School of Law.


2:00PM - 3:00PM       CONCURRENT MORNING BREAKOUT SESSIONS    

Fine Art Presentation  --  Speaker: Keri Brown, Baker Botts LLP

Title:  Valuation, Auctions and Case Law Oh My!

A discussion of tax and litigation art cases with the IRS.

Biography: Keri Brown serves as a trusted advisor to some of the nation’s most prominent individuals on complex federal estate, gift and income tax litigation and controversy matters, including disputes and litigation with the Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service.  She counsels high net worth individuals and families in a variety of courts, including in the United States Tax Court, United States District Courts, and United States Courts of Appeals.  She also represents taxpayers in federal tax audits and administrative appeals and represents fiduciaries and beneficiaries of trusts and estates in state courts with respect to administration and fiduciary duty issues.  Published cases in which Keri served as one of the taxpayer’s counsel include Estate of Murphy, Steinberg, Estate of Petter, Hendrix, and Estate of Christiansen.  In addition to her tax and fiduciary practice, Keri serves as the global partner-in-charge of Corporate Social Responsibility at Baker Botts.

Keri is Chambers-ranked, a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and is board certified in Estate Planning and Probate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. She is an American Bar Association’s RPTE Section council member.  She is the 2022 recipient of the Texas Bar Foundation’s Terry Lee Grantham Memorial Award, recognizing her pro bono service.  She was recognized as a “Woman Who Means Business” in 2021 and a “40 Under 40” in 2018 by the Houston Business Journal for her significant business accomplishments, as well as her commitment to community service, received a resolution in her honor from the State Bar of Texas in 2020, and was named the State Bar of Texas’s Pro Bono Coordinator of the Year in 2018.


Antiques, Furnishings and Decorative Arts  --  Speaker: Karen Keane, Bonhams Skinner

Title:  The 21st Century Auction House:  Global Reach, Personal Touch.

An “insiders” view to the global versus regional auction marketplace. How the current drive to consolidation helps consignors and buyers worldwide. She will be touching on everything auction from clients to sales to our recent merger with Bonhams. 

Biography:  Karen Keane is CEO of Bonhams Skinner, overseeing the operation of one of the world's leading auction houses, the largest in New England. She was instrumental in the establishment of Bonhams Skinner as a world-class auction gallery in Boston, as well as the company's expansion into specialty areas including Fine Musical Instruments, Science & Technology, Rare Books & Manuscripts, Fine Wines, and Judaica.

Karen brings her lifelong passion for art, antiques and the study of material culture to bear for Bonhams Skinner's business. In addition to running the company, she is also one of firm's most versatile appraisers, possessing a broad knowledge of furniture, and fine and decorative arts. Her specialty areas include American Furniture & Decorative Arts, Americana, and Folk Art. Karen is USPAP certified by the Appraiser's Association of America. She is also a formidable presence at the auction podium, and became the company's first female auctioneer early in her career. 


Gem & Jewelry Presentation  --  Speaker:  Diana Singer

Title:  What makes Good - Good.

Estate Jewelry Dealer and Jewelry Historian, Diana Singer, opens our eyes on how to spot good design. Join Diana Singer, estate jewelry dealer and jewelry historian, as she breaks down the thought process behind the jewels. Mathematics, color theory, spatial relationships, construction, all play a part in the story.  Presented in an lively, fun, and highly understandable format, we can guarantee you'll never look at jewelry the same way again.

Biography:   Diana Singer has been a wholesale estate jewelry dealer for the past 45 years.  She holds a GG degree from the GIA and is the president of the American Society of Jewelry Historians. She has lectured for the GIA and numerous educational venues over the years including the venerable “Jewelry Camp”, the new Jewelers Circle 0n varied estate and antique jewelry topics. Diane’s articles and quotations have appeared in many industry publications, including Rapaport, JCK, and the ASJH newsletter.


3:30PM - 4:30PM       AFTERNOON GENERAL SESSION #2    

Speaker:  Robin Bonner

Title:  What to do and not to do when writing for the IRS

Ms. Bonner has appraised billions of dollars of late 19th -21st century Modern and Contemporary fine art and other types of cultural properties for Charitable Contribution, Estate and Gift tax, and insurance scheduling.  Ms. Bonner will be focusing on reports completed for the IRS based on her extensive history.  

Biographer:  Robin M. Bonner retired in 2021 from Art Appraisal Services (AAS) at the Internal Revenue Service in Washington, D.C., to establish her own appraisal business, Bonner Arts, specializing in appraisals and appraisal reviews concerning compliance issues on the part of the appraisal, appraiser, and taxpayer.  Prior to her twelve years at the IRS, Ms. Bonner accumulated 35 years as an artist, gallery director, gallery owner, private dealer, and finally as an independent appraiser with offices in the Washington, D.C. area and Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Ms. Bonner has appraised billions of dollars of late 19th -21st century Modern and Contemporary fine art and other types of cultural properties for Charitable Contribution, Estate and Gift tax, and insurance scheduling. 


Monday, March 20, 2023

9:00AM - 11:00AM       MORNING GENERAL SESSION #1    

Speaker:  Judith Martin

Title:  Tuning Up Your Appraisal Reports

This two hour session will focus on tuning up your appraisal reports for the various intended uses and users of personal property reports.    Not only will the ISA report writing standard be fleshed out, there will be some very fine examples included to show how you can enhance your report for the reader.  Every appraiser needs to see new and different ways to prepare their reports.   Ms. Martin will be sharing with us some different approaches to our appraisal report presentations.  Tuning up your appraisal report is not as difficult as it might seem.

Biography:  Judith Martin ISA CAPP is currently the Director of Education for the International Society of Appraisers.  Ms. Martin has been involved with ISA Education since 1999.  She was the   lead CORE instructor prior to moving to the ISA  Board of Directors in 2005.     She has been a CAPP reviewer for ISA for the past ten years as well as coming back to teach, CORE, AF+DA and Requalification for ISA in 2021.   

Speaker & times subject to change