Makers Mark update

21 07 2010

An update on the earlier post, word on the street includes:

  • Debt is apparently in the many millions of dollars (part of me hopes I’ve heard that wrong; so confirmation/correction would be appreciated)… Did I say voluntary administration was responsible and sensible? Perhaps responsible would have been seeking assistance/advice a bit earlier.
  • If the numbers are right, perhaps the optimism I had for them trading out of their financial trouble was unrealistic.
  • I understand quite a few makers are owed money (boo) and that the gallery has had a reputation for being notoriously difficult to extract payment from.
  • If makers are owed money, can anyone tell me what will happen if the gallery does close? I expect that makers are creditors, but are they first in line for monies? Are they likely to only receive a portion of what they’re owed (likely if the full amount of the debt cannot be recovered from liquidation proceedings I think)? Would that make it better for a maker to retrieve their pieces as early as possible – at least with the piece in their hand a maker can resell it at its full value, as opposed to perhaps only receiving a portion of its value if it’s sold in the gallery in the meantime? Are there restrictions for such actions though – I don’t know how the gallery-artist agreement is structured?
  • The picture being painted for me is one where business practices may have been the main issue; so my initial question around whether Melbourne had reached a kind of market saturation for jewellery and artisan objects is probably answered with a ‘no’. It looks more than likely Melbourne will be one gallery short in the near future … is this an opportunity for another gallery space to open? What could the future of the Melbourne gallery scene look like? I’ve been thinking that Makers Mark created/filled a space of artisan/hand-made, though perhaps slightly conservative, jewellery (when compared to Gallery Funaki say; as many of the pieces were mainly made from precious materials from my memory of my visits) …
  • I understand makers with work at the gallery were required to submit paperwork on their pieces to the administrators by last Friday, after getting notification last Tuesday … geez, less than four days notice, that’s really short notice even for the most organised person (though this is more an action of the administrator than the gallery).
  • The gallery twitter account linked to my last story, and a link to the twitter account is published on their website News page. I initially thought this was quite odd, but I’ve thought a little about this – I originally thought that it might have been best that the administration remain as unknown as possible among the general public; however perhaps the more people who know, the more foot-traffic the gallery may receive in the limited time they have before the next creditor meeting, and the more sales may be made, the more debt reduction, etc…
  • There has been more coverage (again tweeted by Makers Mark) here

Any comments or thoughts, especially from those makers affected, certainly welcome.



2 responses

30 07 2010
Makers Mark is closing « Melbourne Jeweller

[…] see the previous stories (first and second) and the comments left –  it seems store credit, gift vouchers and special orders are not being […]

14 08 2010

Why don’t sell it as a going concern

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