Sold, for $21,005.
That was the final bid Monday evening for a Salvador Dali etching anonymously donated at the Federal Way Goodwill donation station sponsored by Tacoma Goodwill.
The etching, titled Reflection, is No. 126 of 150 and part of Dalis Cycle of Life Suite.
Bidding began Nov. 6 with a reserve of $999 at www.shopgoodwill.com.
Following a scramble of news reports in national media from CNN to Fox, from Huffington Post to MSNBC the bids, and interest, steadily rose.
By late Monday afternoon, the work had received 149 bids and had been seen by more than 100,000 viewers, said Tacoma Goodwill e-sales manager Dylan Lippert.
Theres just obviously a lot of excitement around this, he said. Its surprising to me. Talk about a humbling experience. Every once in a while something like this reminds us of how important what we do is. This is funding 10 scholarships for people with disabilities and barriers to employment. Just this one item will fund another 10 people. As of last week, there wasnt funding for that. Its amazing.
Regardless of who you are, Lippert said, I think its really easy to get a little caught up in this and feel good about it.
The work had been authenticated by Puyallup senior appraiser and fine arts specialist Donald Dunnigan.
Its the real thing, he said Monday. Its not a fake.
Robert Varner, a nationally recognized Dali expert and Minnesota-based art broker, is familiar with the piece, and in fact has the full Cycle of Life Suite for sale.
The activity surrounding the Tacoma Goodwill etching has surprised him.
Its shocking, he said. I was shocked when it hit $5,000, then I heard $8,000, then $12,000. I see its up to $18,000. Im flabbergasted.
The price of his full suite might now increase from its current $5,000.
This is a strong example of how the art market is coming back in correlation with the real estate market, said Dunnigan.
Lippert, of the Tacoma Goodwill, agrees.
I think its an indication that the art market is coming back, he said. When people see an opportunity, and at the same time can fund a nonprofit with a great mission, I think that adds to the value of the item. People can spend money, get something they want and feel good about where that money is going.
Terry Hayes, Tacoma Goodwill CEO, remains confident that the high bids are, like the etching, authentic.
Theres been some big-name national people bidding on this, she said Monday. Weve looked at the names of some of the bidders names youd recognize.
Given privacy restrictions, the names of bidders will not be released without their permission.
Id love to meet the person who donated it so I can offer my thinks, Hayes said. I would say that were so grateful, and were able to turn that donation into job training. Whoever donated that probably had no idea they would do so much good. Its an incredible gift.
Hayes said she would also enjoy meeting the winning bidder.
Id like to invite the buyer to our Goodwill or the one nearest to them, so they can understand the good theyve done.
C.R. Roberts: 253-597-8535