I'm no stranger to those silly investment scam emails from Bank of Nigeria (or wherever), but I haven't personally been sent one in ages. I guess it's been awhile since someone shared the tip that I'm the go-to guy for international investing and money managment. This morning, however, I got a special treat - Mr. Paul Simon, from Oceanic Artworks in Abuja, got in touch with me about purchasing some of my "lovely artworks". I normally wouldn't have thought to respond to this, but imagine my surprise when I realized that they actually typed in the titles for two of my projects that they found on the internet... and then asked what condition they were in, were they in frames? The works, Welcome Home, Pioneer and Predator vs. Prey, aren't in frames, primarily because they are large (and in one case moving) sculptures. Clearly whoever wrote me really wants to pay top dollar for my work - whatever it actually is! With minimal egging on from my roommate, I sent Mr. Simon a response. Below is the original letter followed by mine... hopefully this will be fruitful.
Oceanic Artwork Is located in Abuja, Nigeria with is various stores across Africa. We have been in business since 1992. We buy and sell different views of artworks including Sculptures, fabrics artworks, Metal and Wooden artworks, Poetry with pots, canvas and Captivating carpets, Herbs & Natural Foods, Textiles etc….
Over the years, and through our commitment, experience, and expertise Oceanic Artwork has established a business relationship with our customers that will last a lifetime! We hope we can count on you to be one of our faithful customers. We challenge you to give us a try. We will do our best to beat the competition.
We came across your web page while searching for good artworks And I will like to buy some of these creative artworks out of your Stock. I am pleased to let you know that we am interested in the Purchase of some of your lovely artworks, please let us know the present Condition of the artworks. Are they in frames?
Welcome Home, Pioneer
Predator vs. Prey
We appreciate and value your business and look forward to provide you with the best possible service.
Mr. Paul Simon
FOR: Oceanic Artwork
Or writing us at:
Address: Suite 031,
Wuse phase 2,
Behind New Market central
Calling us at: 09-7821850,
Hello Mr. Simon!
I am very excited to have been contacted by you regarding my art work and your organization, Oceanic Artworks! As an artist in the United States, I am unaccustomed to people purchasing my work no matter how hard I try, but since it is my passion you will understand that I must pursue art even though it keeps me from becoming a rich man (for now)! I am especially pleased that you would be happy to include my work in your galleries, and I'm sure you will find that works such as "Welcome Home, Pioneer" will fit in nicely next to some of your captivating carpets and poetry with pots.
You have asked about the condition of these works and I assure you that they are both in fine condition, as neither of them have left my house for some time. "Predator vs. Prey" has occupied a special place in my living room for the last two years - I must only brush off some dust and then it will be ready for purchase in one of your fine galleries. This situation with my work is very similar to my great paintings which I also possess. I have dozens of fine paintings in oil paint on board - they are currently kept safely in my parent's attic and I am sure they will be very happy to be rid of them, as they are for some reason unpopular at the garage sales in their neighborhood.
You have also asked if these art works are framed and I can assure you that they are. "Welcome Home, Pioneer" is indeed a superb frame, and you will find that it will grace any room with it's beauty and form. I like to think of it as one of the best sculptures I currently have in my stock - and in fact I have been told by many important people that this sculpture rivals a good Rodin or Kincaid or anything by Hirst, but I must of course digress! I'm sure you will agree though! Especially when you see it! This work is especially good for people who enjoy landscapes!
We must of course discuss the important shipment of these works immediately. You will understand that these works are both very large and I will need to take the utmost care to pack them so as to insure that they do not incure any damage during the dangerous shipment across the ocean. Both of these arts are also very delicate, and they will require very careful packing in order to get them to you. As I do not have much money from my art, I will require a small advance payment to procure the necessary materials to pack the art and to hire top professional men to make sure this is done correctly and the best way possible. I can not take a chance that this work will not make it to you in the best condition!
I'm sure you are also aware how difficult it is to get good works of art past our Customs police here in the United States. As we are of course careful not to let terrorism in or out of our borders now, the Officials inspect every package and are particularly suspicious of anything that is art as they think it may be something else. We must be very careful here in America now as everyone seems to want to kill us all the time! I will need to pay these police a small sum to make sure that I can get the work to you in Nigeria promptly. This is only a standard procedure that any artist must fulfill and you will understand. I wish it was not this way but with the terrorism we must be careful always!
You will be so happy when you have this art in your hands! My work is about beauty and truth in the human form and I'm sure you will agree! I hope we will both be able to profit excitingly from this venture!!! I look forward to hearing back from you very soon!
- Shaun Slifer
New York City, NY