Sotheby'sSotheby's2Sotheby's3With the auction house $1.2 billion in debt, and investors being advised to “get out” of Sotheby’s, operations are more and more Dadaesque.

“Dadaism is a stratagem by which the artist can impart to the citizen something of the inner unrest which prevents the artist himself from being lulled to sleep by custom and routine. By means of external stimuli, he can compensate for the citizen’s lack of inner urgency and vitality, and shake him into new life.” Udo Kukser, Dada-Almanch, 1920

In the case of Sotheby’s the “external stimuli” comes from borrowed pension fund money that will never be paid back, given the existing shareholder first business model. And the “new life” proposed by Dadaism is actually nothingness that comes from rebelling against life itself.