Side Hustle Part One: The Auction House

If you've been paying any attention to the studio via social media or otherwise this past year, you've noticed that things have come to a bit of a stand-still in terms of progress. The delays have been largely out of my hands which is frustrating but I feel as though things are back on track since the new year!

Lest anyone think I've been loafing in the interim I'm putting together a series of posts titled Side Hustle to illustrate what it takes to keep things afloat when the build doesn't go your way. In this entry: Going Once, Going Twice...Gone!


As I've mentioned in a previous post, I did a stretch of about a year and a half working as the floor manager at an auction house downtown. It was somewhat stimulating creatively but in the end I found that it wasn't for me.

Classy Leather Sofa

One of my favorite pieces from my time at the house.

There was a certain voyeuristic pleasure to be had in cataloguing the worldly possessions of the recently deceased but ultimately, the industry was too morbid for me. For every piece of cool mid-century modern furniture or vintage stereo there were two dozen boxes worth of seashell collections or opera records. It's hard to get jazzed for a day of sorting through a lifetime of precious moments figurines just to watch them be snapped up for pennies by the next hoarder in line. It's a bummer.

Picasso, Ceramic

Having access to a Picasso was a memorable experience.

A cycle becomes apparent as the same items pass through the house multiple times. At first, you wonder why these people are buying up these items just to auction them off again. Then the depressing reality sets in that they have passed on and their next of kin has brought their estate in to be (re)sold. Bummer.

Precious Moments, Royal Doulton

So much Royal Doulton. So, so much royal Doulton... She got what was coming to her. One day these will be replaced by my generation's limited edition action figures.


erotic Chinese Art, Sculpture, Porcelain

No comment.

Overall, the bummers outweighed the cooler parts of the job. Houses like the one I worked for serve an important purpose especially when more and more people find themselves downsizing. Much like the funeral industry; I believe it takes a very specific type of person to excel in the business.

Royal Douton, Collectibles, Figurines, Porcelain

These figurines begin to haunt your dreams after a time.

I found smiling faces to be few and far between in the estate auction industry. The estate owner is either dead or dying, the consignor is mourning, the house owner is annoyed at the consignor's incessant inquiries and the "winner" of the auction is regretting their purchase, wondering where they're going to put two full service dinner sets and if they'll even be around long enough to host another dinner party.

Did I mention it was a bummer?

NEXT TIME: LOTS of smiling faces and a big pink backpack.

pee wee herman, painting, relative

Pictured Here, A long lost relative of Pee-Wee Herman.

1 comment

  • Sandie

    TOO FUNNY !!

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