WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
Art world veteran Barbara Strongin's decades-long experiences at both Christie's Auction House and Sotheby's Institute of Art form the basis of the insider's look in Beneath the Gavel, an immersive, physical theater piece that gives the audience an unforgettable glimpse at one of the only markets to show up on the front pages of every major newspaper: the art market.
In Beneath the Gavel, audience members, at first observers, quickly become bidders — with fistfuls of cash — as the performers around them bring various roles to life: deep-pocket collectors, art dealers, artists, critics, and auctioneers. An experience like few before it, Beneath the Gavel boldly explores — through vivid storytelling and theatricality — how art is created and is assigned value. As the stakes rise, so too does the audience's understanding of the excitement — and tension — of a world that values art as high commerce, one at odds with a world that depends on art for cultural nourishment.