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A Portrait of the Artist as a Young, Middle-Aged, and Elderly Man


  • Lanyon, G.R.
  • Smith, L.


We explore the age-value and age-quantity productivity proles of fty- three great Western artists whose work has been auctioned in the last decade. In terms of the average value of their paintings, we nd that artists have three distinct phases to their careers: a steep incline, more than doubling their expected value until an age 31 peak; then follows a slower decline until age 47, losing almost half their peak value, and nally a very slow decline. The top quartile of artists distinguish themselves not only by a higher average value, but also in midcareer by losing only a fth of their peak value in 31-47.

Suggested Citation

  • Lanyon, G.R. & Smith, L., 1999. "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young, Middle-Aged, and Elderly Man," Papers 99-06, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:michet:99-06

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item



    JEL classification:

    • L62 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Automobiles; Other Transportation Equipment; Related Parts and Equipment
    • Z10 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - General


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