Classic saleroom auctions are conducted by an auctioneer who is physically present. Bidders can participate in the auction room, by telephone, by written absentee bid, or via livestream online.
A prerequisite for all types of bidding is that you register well in advance of the auction with your name, address, telephone number and a copy of your passport or other official ID. By placing a bid, the bidder confirms that they have read and accepted Koller's auction conditions. Changes to the buyer's name or address after the bid has been accepted are not possible. Koller may require proof of solvency from first-time bidders and, in special cases, a deposit.
BIDDING IN THE AUCTION ROOM
To bid in person in the auction room, please register directly with our staff, using your passport or other official ID, at least 15 minutes before the auction begins. You will then receive your bidder number. Bid clearly with this number when your desired item comes up for auction.
BIDDING BY TELEPHONE
For objects with a lower estimate of CHF 1 000 or more, we offer you the opportunity to participate in the auction by telephone. A Koller employee will call you directly from the saleroom when each of your designated lots comes up for sale, inform you by telephone (whenever possible in the language of your choice) of the amount of the current bid and bid for you according to your directions.
You can register for telephone bidding directly through the online catalogues by clicking on the BID NOW button. In order to do so, you first need to register (or log in if you are already registered) on our website. You may also fill out a bid form and send it to us by email or post, or deliver it to us in person during the auction preview. We recommend that you submit an ‘emergency’ written bid in addition to the telephone bid in case we are unable to reach you during the auction. Registration for telephone bidding must be made at least 24 hours before the auction and is only valid after verification and subsequent written confirmation by Koller.
LEAVING AN ABSENTEE BID
If you are certain of the maximum amount of your personal bid, you can instruct us in writing to bid for you no higher than necessary and up to the maximum price you have set (excluding buyer's premium).
You can register your absentee bid directly through the online catalogues by clicking on the BID NOW button. In order to do so, you first need to register (or log in if you are already registered) on our website. You may also fill out a bid form and send it to us by email or post, or deliver it to us in person during the auction preview. Absentee bids must be received by us at least 24 hours before the auction and are only valid after verification and subsequent written confirmation by Koller.
BIDDING ONLINE DURING A SALEROOM AUCTION (LIVESTREAM)
We offer you the possibility to follow all our classic saleroom auctions live online (with video and audio livestream) and to bid for any item in real time. To register for livestream online bidding, register at least 24 hours before the auction via the Livestream link next to each auction in the auction calendar. Your registration is only valid after verification and subsequent written confirmation by Koller.
Important: Please note that the standard limit for online bidding during a saleroom auction is CHF 10,000 (in total, not per lot). Once this limit has been reached, the system will not allow any further bids. If you would like to set a higher personal spending limit for the auction, you must request this during the registration process. Please also note that Koller charges an additional fee of 3% of the hammer price for purchases made live online in a classic auction. If you only want to watch a saleroom auction via livestream without bidding, you do not need to register.
BIDDING IN IBID ONLINE ONLY AUCTIONS
Our ibid online only auctions take place exclusively online. You can only bid online in these auctions. Please sign in on our website or register here. Bids can be submitted immediately following publication of the online catalogue until the end of the auction. Each lot has a specific end time for bidding. The items in the auction can be physically examined during the preview on our premises in Zurich. For the wine auctions, the lots can only be viewed in Geneva by prior appointment.
PLACING BIDS IN IBID ONLINE ONLY AUCTIONS
For each object you will see the starting bid or current highest bid and the button ‘Bid now’. When you click on this button, the next highest bid including buyer’s premium and VAT will be displayed. You then have the opportunity to decide if you wish to bid this amount. Only when you click on the ‘Enter bid’ button is your bid considered irrevocably binding.
Please note that once you have placed a bid in an ibid online only auction it cannot be cancelled, as this impacts previously placed bids. If you receive a message directly after placing a bid that we have already received a higher bid, this is not an error but is due to the fact that another bidder has already placed a maximum bid for this object.
You also have the option to place a higher bid than the one automatically displayed by the system. If you place a higher bid than the next highest bid, this bid will be saved by the system which will bid for you step by step up to your ‘maximum bid’. Your maximum bid cannot be seen by other bidders until it is required.
As soon as you are outbid, you will be automatically informed by e-mail or SMS. Important: Please note that the system will not send any notifications in the last 2 minutes before the end of the auction of an item – we strongly recommend that you follow the final minutes of bidding online. If a new bid is received within the last 30 seconds before the end of bidding for an item, the time period for that item is automatically extended by 1 minute. This gives you the opportunity to increase your bid. The final 60 seconds for each item are indicated by a countdown status bar.
Catalogue – descriptions – Auction preview
• Are the auction items guaranteed (are the catalogue descriptions binding)?
Yes. With over 60 years’ experience, Koller guarantees the catalogue descriptions according to our auction conditions. All items in our ibid online only auctions are examined with the same care and by the same specialists as the works in our classic saleroom auctions. The works in our catalogues are also checked by the Art Loss Register. In this way we ensure that none of the items offered has gone astray of its rightful owner.
• Can I request a condition report?
If you do not have the opportunity to personally inspect the items in which you are interested, you can always contact the department to obtain further information and condition reports. All lots offered in the ibid online only auctions already have a condition report in each description. Please note, however, that the items offered at auction are generally not brand new, and often show signs of wear.
• What is an auction estimate?
The estimates in our auction catalogues reflect the price range for comparable works of art sold at auction in recent years. They are the result of agreements between our specialists and the owners who entrusted the works to us for auction. Sellers (also called consignors) may set minimum prices, called ‘reserves’, below which their items may not be sold. If any such reserves have been agreed upon, they are normally equal to or slightly below the lower catalogue estimate.
In an ibid online only auction, the reserve is the same as the starting price.
• What do the symbols * (asterisk) and ♣ signify next to a lot number?
All items indicated with an asterisk * are fully liable to VAT, meaning that for these items, VAT will be charged on the sum of the hammer price plus buyer’s premium. Buyers who provide an officially stamped export declaration will receive a refund of the VAT.
Items marked with a ♣ were made from material of a protected species that is subject to certain trade restrictions. If you want to buy this item and export it from Switzerland, please inquire about the import regulations of the destination country before the auction.
• How can I receive a printed catalogue?
• Can I obtain additional images of a lot?
On our website, you can download all images in high resolution, by clicking the download button in the detail view of each catalogue entry, directly below the main image. For our saleroom auctions, Koller can only send additional photos in certain cases.
For our ibid online only auctions, it is unfortunately not possible for us to send you additional images of any lot. Each lot has between 3 and 6 images in the online catalogue, which can be enlarged with the zoom feature. If you are still uncertain, you can always examine the lot in person during our auction preview.
• Can I see the auction items in person?
All auction items are on display at our premises on the Hardturmstrasse in Zurich for several days before the auction. Our previews are open to the public, with no obligation to register to bid. During our previews, you can examine the objects in person and speak with our specialists about the condition and the expected interest for individual lots. If you do not have the opportunity to personally inspect the items in which you are interested, you can always contact the department for further information and condition reports. The dates and locations of our previews are listed in the auction calendar.
• Can I buy an object directly, before the auction?
No, in principle all of the items we offer for sale are sold in the public auction. However, we do have a ‘Private Sales’ service for customers who do not wish to buy and/or sell at auction.
• Who can participate in an auction?
Our auctions are public and open to everyone. In order to bid you must register beforehand, and your registration must be approved by our client services department.
For more detailed information about how to bid, click here.
• How can I bid in an auction?
In our classic saleroom auctions you have the following bidding possibilities:
- Bid in person in the saleroom
- Leave a written absentee bid or a telephone bid (by clicking the button next to each lot in the online catalogue, submitting a bid form by email or in person during the preview)
- Bid online via livestream (video and audio link to the auction with the possibility to bid in real time)
In our ibid online only auctions you can only bid by clicking the ‘Bid now’ button in the online catalogue. It is not possible to leave a written bid or a telephone bid for these auctions.
For more detailed information about how to bid, click here.
• How can I follow a saleroom auction online (livestream)?
You can follow all of our saleroom auctions live on your computer, tablet or smartphone via livestream. Simply click on the ‘Livestream Auction’ button next to the catalogue cover image on the ‘Auction Calendar’ page of our website, once the auction begins. If you would like to bid live online, you need to register at least 24 hours before the auction.
• What personal data do I have to provide in order to bid?
For in-person bidding in our saleroom auctions, we require your name, address, telephone number and passport or ID.
For our ibid online only auctions, besides your name and address, we ask for your email address and your mobile number, in case you wish to be notified about your bids via SMS. For security reasons, we also require valid credit card information.
• Why do I need a credit card to bid in ibid online only auctions?
Because you are bidding in real time, against other bidders, we need your credit card information as additional proof of your identity. You are not required to pay for your purchases by credit card. However, if you do not pay your invoice by its due date, we reserve the right to debit the amount due from your credit card.
• Is my credit card information secure?
Yes, your credit card information is safe. The information is encrypted and stored by SIX Payment Services. Koller Auctions has no access to this information.
• At what price does the bidding start?
The bidding begins with a starting price. In saleroom auctions, this price is set by the auctioneer and is usually about half of the upper estimate.
In an ibid online only auction, the starting price or the ‘next bid’ is indicated in the online catalogue.
• What is a reserve (minimum sale price)?
A reserve, or minimum sale price, is the price agreed to between the consignors and Koller Auctions below which an object may not be sold at the auction. In a saleroom auction, the auctioneer may start the bidding for an item below the reserve. As long as the reserve has not been reached, the auctioneer may bid on behalf of the consignor. The auctioneer can also ‘conditionally’ sell an auction item under the reserve price.
In an ibid online only auction, the reserve is the same as the starting price.
• How does a maximum bid work in an ibid online only auction?
If you don’t want to keep bidding step-by-step, another way to participate in an ibid auction is to leave a maximum bid. The system will then bid automatically for you up to the maximum amount you entered. If the bidding stops before your maximum bid is reached, you will obtain the item for the last bid plus fees, not the maximum.
• Will I be automatically informed when I am outbid?
If you leave an absentee bid for a saleroom auction, you will not be informed when you are outbid. All pre-auction absentee bids remain confidential.
For ibid online only auctions, you will be informed each time you are outbid. When you register to bid, you can choose whether you wish to be informed by email or by text messaging. You will receive a notification each time you are outbid, as well as when you are the successful bidder. Please note that no further notifications will be sent during the last two minutes of bidding.
If a new bid is entered within the last 30 seconds before the end of the auction for a lot, the bidding for that lot will be automatically extended by one minute. That way you have time to decide whether you wish to bid again. The last 30 seconds will be clearly indicated on a status bar.
• Can I withdraw my bid?
For saleroom auctions, it is possible to withdraw a pre-sale bid by submitting a written request at least 24 hours before the auction.
For ibid online only auctions, it is not possible to withdraw a bid. Because you are bidding in real time against other bidders, each bid is binding and cannot be withdrawn.
• What is a hammer price?
The hammer price is the price for which an item is attributed to the winning bidder. It does not yet include any additional fees. With the fall of the hammer, the purchase contract between the seller and the purchaser becomes valid. In an ibid online only auction, the lot is awarded to the bidder who has submitted the highest bid at the end of the auction period determined by the system.
• Do I have to pay any fees in addition to the hammer price?
In addition to the hammer price, the purchaser must pay a buyer's premium. The amount of the buyer's premium can be found in our auction conditions. For lots purchased over an online bidding platform during a classic saleroom auction, an additional fee of 3% of the hammer price will be charged.
For credit card payments an additional processing fee of 3% of the total invoice will be charged. This fee does not apply to purchases in ibid only online only auctions.
The buyer must pay the Swiss Value Added Tax (VAT) on the buyer's premium. All items marked with * in our auction catalogues are fully subject to VAT, i.e. for these items VAT will be charged on the total of the hammer price plus buyer's premium. The VAT will be refunded to purchasers who present a legally stamped export declaration.
• What is a ‘conditional sale’?
The auctioneer may designate an item in a classic saleroom auction as ‘sold conditionally’. Such sales are subject to confirmation. Among the reasons for a conditional sale may be the absence of a signed agreement between the auctioneer and the consignor, or the failure to reach the reserve price. In case of the conditional acceptance of a bid, the winning bidder remains bound to his/her bid for 14 days. After consultation with the consignor, Koller will definitively confirm or cancel the sale within 14 days.
In ibid online only auctions, no lots are sold conditionally.
• What are your auction conditions?
After the auction
• How do I know if I am the successful bidder for an item?
If you are the highest bidder for an item, you will receive an invoice by email. If you left an absentee bid for an item and you were outbid, you will also be notified by us at the end of the auction series.
You can see all of the items on which you bid in your Koller account under ‘Bids’. You can also see if you were the successful bidder on those items.
• How do I pay for the items I purchase?
Invoices can be paid by bank transfer, or on our premises by Maestro (debit) or credit card. Cash payments are also possible within the current legal limits. For cash amounts of CHF 30,000 or more, the completion of a form in accordance with anti-money-laundering legislation is mandatory. Koller may refuse to accept cash payments at any time without specifying a reason.
If you pay directly after the auction, you can collect the auctioned items immediately. All invoices will be sent by e-mail after the auction and must be paid within 7 days.
For purchases in classic saleroom auctions, Koller charges an additional handling fee of 3% of the invoice amount for credit card payments. This fee does not apply to purchases in ibid only online only auctions.
For lots purchased over an online bidding platform during a classic saleroom auction, an additional fee of 3% of the hammer price will be charged.
• Can I pay by credit card?
You can pay for the auctioned items with Maestro (debit) or credit card. For credit card payments in the classic saleroom auctions Koller charges an additional handling fee of 3% of the invoice amount. This fee does not apply to purchases in ibid only online only auctions.
• How can I collect my purchases?
After paying the invoice amount, which includes the hammer price as well as the buyer's premium and fees noted in the catalogue and on our website, you can collect the auctioned item at our premises or instruct us to organise the delivery. Our logistics team will be happy to assist you with the shipping of your purchase and will also take care of any customs formalities. Objects that have not been picked up within four weeks after the auction will be stored by us or a third-party company at the purchaser’s expense.
• Do you take care of the shipping for the objects I bought?
Our logistics team (email@example.com) will be happy to assist you with the shipping of your purchase and will also take care of any customs formalities. Shipping costs are the responsibility of the purchaser.
• Can I purchase an unsold item after the auction?
For saleroom auctions, you may contact the department and make an offer on any unsold lots.
For ibid online only auctions, it is not possible to purchase items outside of the auction.
• How can I register, and why should I create a Koller account?
A Koller account allows you to create your personal ‘My Catalogue’ list of selected items from our current catalogues, bid in our auctions directly through the online catalogues or during livestream auctions, bid in our ibid online only auctions, view your invoices and bid history, create a ‘My Search’ wish list, and much more. You can register and create your account here.
• What if I have forgotten my password?
If you forget your password, we will help you to quickly and easily get a new one. Just enter the email address you used to register at Koller here and we will send you a link to reset your password. If you haven’t received an email within a few minutes, please check your spam folder. If you have forgotten your registered email address, please call our help desk: +41 44 445 63 99.
• How does ‘My Catalogue’ ♡ work?"
With the ‘My Catalogue’ feature, you can make your own personal catalogue containing exclusively the items in which you are interested. You also have the possibility to show only the items on your screen which you would like to watch or have bid on. To use this feature you need to sign in to your account on our website, or to create an account if you don’t have one yet.
• How can I receive information about your upcoming auctions?
We regularly send newsletters to our customers to inform them about upcoming auctions, events and other news. You can sign up for our newsletter here.
• Can I receive information about works by specific artists or makers when they appear in your auctions?
If you are looking for works by individual artists or items from specific collecting fields, you have the option of registering your individual searches on our website via ‘My Search’. This way you will automatically receive a message as soon as an object with the corresponding criteria comes up for auction in one of our upcoming sales. If you need help registering your search, please email or call us at: firstname.lastname@example.org, +41 44 445 63 99
• I have other questions, how can I obtain help?
If you need technical support concerning the auction or your registration, you can contact our help desk by email (email@example.com) or by telephone (+41 44 445 63 99). If you have questions concerning an item in the auction, please click on the ‘Query’ button, located next to each lot description. This will enable you to get in touch by telephone or email with the appropriate specialist for this item.
Only the conditions for classic auctions or the conditions for online only auctions are legally binding in all relations between bidders and Koller Auctions.
Selling with Koller Auctions
Seven steps, from proposal to payment
The auction catalogues are published digitally and in printed form and are sent to collectors worldwide. In the weeks previous to our four annual auction series, we also publish our magazine KOLLERview with a circulation of between 20,000 and 400,000 copies. KOLLERview presents highlights from upcoming auctions as well as a review of recent results. The presence of our digital catalogues on important international art and auction platforms, and marketing that extends far beyond Switzerland and Europe ensure that our auctions attract worldwide attention.
All items coming to auction are exhibited in our premises in Zurich, and highlights are shown in Geneva, Basel and Germany. For outstanding works we also organize previews in other cities, and we regularly exhibit important Asian objects in China. At these previews, collectors can obtain information about the individual auction items and speak with our specialists. We also send condition reports and additional photographs upon request and give personalised advice to prospective buyers.
At our classic saleroom auctions, interested parties can bid in person or live online, as well as by telephone or by leaving a written absentee bid. All bidders must be vetted and approved.
The proceeds of the auction sale are transferred to the seller after receipt of payment by the buyer, within six weeks after the auction.
Contact our experts at any time for a personal consultation.
Would like to sell your paintings, sculpture, works of fine and decorative art, jewellery, watches, antiques, Asian art or wine at auction to a public of international bidders and buyers? Koller Auctions, with over sixty years of professional experience, is your ideal partner. Selling at Koller is uncomplicated and rewarding.We will be happy to answer any questions you may have concerning consignments to our auctions.
Swiss Art and Impressionist & Modern Art
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