Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"Payout after attacks," by Christopher Moore,

October 17, 2001, The (New Zealand) Press, "Payout after attacks," by Christopher Moore,

Art insurers in the United States are confronting paying out millions of dollars in compensation for art works lost in the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York's World Trade Centre.

Sources have already indicated that the value of the works destroyed in the attacks will exceed any previous losses.

The amount paid out in compensation might also be well below the true loss -- much of the art housed in the World Trade Centre was not insured for its full value.

The bond-dealing firm, Cantor Fitzgerald, was housed on the 105th floor.

Its offices contained a significant collection of Rodin sculptures, but it is still unclear how many were in the building at the time of the attack. Estimates range from dozens to several hundred.

The North Tower offices of the investment management firm, Fred Alger, lost an important collection of photographs by contemporary artists including Cindy Sherman and Hiroshi Sugimoto while more than 100 contemporary art works in the Bank of America's offices were destroyed according to ARTnews in New York.

Meanwhile collections housed in the offices of Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers at the World Financial Centre escaped the holocaust.

There were major losses of public art works at the WTC.

An Alexander Calder sculpture, a tapestry by Joan Miro, and a Roy Lichtenstein painting were destroyed. The only work of public art in the immediate vicinity of the WTC which remained intact was a Lichtenstein sculpture, Modern Head.

While estimates for the cost of lost art remain sketchy, one art insurer is predicting insurance payments of at least $US100m.

Other insurers predict that the losses will also radically change art insurance and corporate art collecting.

Art insurance was once a stable market which recorded losses rarely. The possibilities of total loss appeared slim. Now insurers are predicting that premiums could rise by 15 to 25 per cent. -- Christopher Moore

MOORE, Christopher. "Payout after attacks." The Press. 2001. HighBeam Research. (October 3, 2010). http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-17450869.html

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