When my father, a lifetime educator and prolific artist, passed away I was handed the burden of valuing his estate. The real property and tangible personal property were the easy items but putting a value in his remaining created artwork was something that I hadn’t even considered. I began my search for an art appraiser, found some dead ends and people that didn’t call back.
Enter Jennifer Stoots. Our first telephone conversation was an excellent start, she picked up the phone! I explained my situation and she went straight to the important questions while also being friendly and energetic. Within a couple of weeks she had travelled to the location of the works and spent a full day documenting. She was very focused and left me with the impression of a seasoned professional. In a brief amount of time I had a full appraisal containing 36 pages of analyses, certifications, market values, curricula and example photos. I now had the legal documentation I needed to file a tax return without any doubts about the valuation of my father’s created works.
Jennifer did a great service to my siblings and me by being a dedicated professional with a lot of experience. She was a bright spot in a dark time. I would highly recommend her. —Executor of an Artist’s Estate (January 2019)
I am a member of APAG (the American Photography Archives Group), and Jennifer was our guest lecturer at our August (2018) meeting at ICP. Many of the members are concerned about the future of our inventory and it was quite impressive to learn the many aspects of pricing and appraising a photographic image. At that moment I thought she was the person that I should invite to my studio to better discuss my inventory. I had questions…. and Jennifer certainly had answers.
Our meeting extended for much longer than I ever expected—very generous on her part—and she surprised me with her profound knowledge about how one can go about pricing. She also opened my mind about my own inventory and the many ways to explore it, in ways I never dreamt of, by of the organizations and institutions she mentioned, and much more.
No doubt in my mind I would refer Ms. Stoots for consultation. In fact I already did. Not only is she unique in her particular field but an impressive professional. I would say she was very generous with her knowledge and time. —Valdir Cruz, Photographer (August 2018)
My wife is the executor of a relative’s estate—a talented amateur photographer who had amassed a sizable archive, including many boxes of slides, negatives, and prints (framed and unframed). We needed advice as to how best to preserve his artistic legacy, but had no clue where to start.
When we found Jennifer’s website, we were instantly struck by the fact that she offers guidance to photographers with regards to ensuring their legacy and creative production. After reading the testimonials, and based on our initial contact, we were pretty sure she could help us.
After we provided the information she requested and sent examples of the work, we talked to her by phone. It was clear that she had done a lot of preparatory work and scoped out a potential archive that would be a good fit for the type of work in the collection. She then helped us focus on a strategy. When we subsequently contacted that archive, they were extremely happy with what we were offering and glad to take the material. Our relative’s archive will be donated to them on our next visit.
Jennifer clearly understood the issue facing us, confirmed that the materials should be preserved and helped us find an appropriate archive for them. She more than exceeded our expectations. —Nigel Pond, helping with the Estate of Ron Gratz (October 2017)
I just wanted to thank you for a great presentation. For someone just getting to know the art world, it was a nice background and overview. Looking forward to the day it’s all not such a mystery–or maybe that’s part of the fun?
You’re a wonderful speaker–thanks again.
—Teresa Meier, photographer, Portland, OR (October 2017), commenting on “Follow the Money” presentation, centered around the history of the Western art market, the fine art photography market and where we are today.
An international photographic art collector suggested I contact Jennifer with questions about archiving my work. During our phone conversation, Jennifer’s depth of knowledge and insight was both humbling and refreshing. There is so much I don’t know, and Jennifer helped me understand the various pitfalls and benefits of the appraisal world. I came away with a helpful to-do list, along with new understanding and appreciation about my collection, and the needs and issues of archives in general.
Jennifer is smart, easy to relate to, and passionate about art. Without hesitation I would recommend Jennifer to anyone with basic to complex issues appraising art.
—Ted Engelmann, fine art/documentary photographer, Denver, CO. (April 2017)
I came to Jennifer with a handful of items from my mother in-law’s estate, including art, ceramics, and more. I had zero knowledge of any of it, and zero clue of how to even begin the research. I sent off approximately five emails to various appraisers, made lots of phone calls, and was always met with the same answer—“This is not my specialty.” Then I received a call from Jennifer and, wow, did she exceed my expectations. The ironic thing is that the items I was inquiring about are not her specialty either. However, she was able to give me a boatload of information on places that I could visit, websites to search, and people that I could call. I would highly recommend that she be your first call. She is very quick on her feet, thinks outside the box, and able to articulate her points and thoughts clearly. She comes across as very well educated, well spoken, and a true professional.
—Rocky Stewart, Oregon (March 2017)
I needed an appraisal of my life’s photographic work to facilitate negotiations with a major university that wished to purchase my collection. The University suggested someone in Seattle as a possible appraiser but after discussion with that person and the University, it was mutually decided that Jennifer would be the more appropriate appraiser.
Jennifer more than fulfilled our expectations by demonstrating a way to create a proper inventory database of my collection, traveling to my studio home for three days to personally inspect my prints, and finally to present us with her appraisal, a highly professional document, rich in detail and fully supporting her valuation. Throughout our long involvement she was always been willing to talk and advise us.
I would heartily recommend her to anyone seeking the services of a most excellent art appraiser.
—Tamio Wakayama, retired photographer, Vancouver, B.C. (February 2017)
I could not be more pleased or impressed with Jennifer Stoots. Her professionalism and willingness to help us in an attempt to sell a piece of art—a painting part of an estate that we have found difficult to appraise—went above and beyond. I emailed Jennifer based on a referral from PADA (Portland Art Dealers Association) that she might be able to help point me in the right direction in trying to sell an original oil on board painting, circa 1970s. I received a response from her to my email almost immediately via a phone call. She not only gave me honest answers (a few which she knew I would not be pleased to hear) but also provided several options from the best market for this artist to possible auction houses and names of contacts I could try. I will definitely be consulting her in the future with other works of art we might be selling and highly recommend her.
—Marsha Baker, art & photography owner (November 2016)
Once in a while we encounter someone who goes above and beyond. Jennifer Stoots is one of those people. I emailed her with a simple question she could have replied to with a few words and a link. For that I would have been grateful. Instead she called to discuss the issue making sure she provided the best referral. Jennifer is a consummate professional who delivered more than I hoped for.
—David Paul Bayles, Photographer (David asked me to recommend an attorney that could help with his particular situation, September 2016.)
I wanted to thank you for the amazingly detailed appraisal. Thank you for all of your hard work! On top of being thoroughly researched, it’s a great read! —Susan Seubert, Art Appraisal client (May 2016)
I found “Orchestrating Your Artistic Legacy” to be an excellent workshop and well worth the money. Since I had met with an attorney previously, I already had some basic knowledge about estate planning. I found the first part of the workshop to be an excellent review, and I picked up several new ideas. The second part of the workshop, which focused on information specific to creative careers, was even more helpful. It introduced ideas, tools and strategies for achieving my objectives, some of which I would not have considered on my own. Finally, the workbook and supplements provided as part of the session will be extremely useful tools in organizing my information and materials. —Al Flory, Photographer and Legacy Workshop attendee (February 2016)
I’d describe [Jennifer and Robin] as experienced, professional, and as coming at their work with having had real life experience with artists legacies.
—Jeanne Dunn, Painter and Legacy Workshop attendee (January 2016)
I highly recommend Jennifer for appraisal and consulting services. I would describe Jennifer as conscientious, detailed and efficient; she is highly regarded by museum curators and has a well respected reputation.
—Mark Schlesinger, Senior Property Manager, Schlesinger Companies
My father was an amazing man and left us with photographs, negatives, slides, newspaper clippings and promotional material related to his photo business. I wanted to donated his work to an institution but didn’t know who I should take it to and was overwhelmed by what all we had. Jennifer helped me figure out which institutions would be best to approach, considering that my father was a fine art photographer, photojournalist and a technological innovator. It didn’t take long for her assistant Randy to get everything organized and documented, creating a catalog that I could present to curators. Thanks to Jennifer and Randy, I was able to donate my father’s photographic prints to the Portland Art Museum and other institutions are interested in the rest of his archive.
—Sharon Wing, Trustee, Ray Wing Archive (2015)
I approached Jennifer Stoots with the problem of how to sell a rare contemporary painting by a famous artist—an atypical work that had no comparisons. I wanted guidance and advice on how to get the best price. Jennifer assisted me in many different ways. Her own experience in brokering art helped me to do the same. She helped me negotiate good terms for my painting. […] I would recommend Jennifer in a heartbeat. You don’t know you need her until you enter her world of buying, selling and appraising art. Stoots is insightful, thorough and practical, personable and funny.
—Ellen Van Fleet, Artist & seller of a rare painting by a significant 20th century artist (2014)
I asked Jennifer to appraise my personal art collection, which consists mainly of photography. I was very pleased not only with the thoroughness of her work but also with her clear explanations about how she arrived at the appraised values. She exceeded my expectations and I would refer her to others without hesitation. She is extremely knowledgeable and informative. But more importantly, she is passionate about the appraisal process and a pleasure to work with.
—David Pace, Photographer & Educator (2015)
I was extremely pleased with the work that Jennifer Stoots did in appraising several photographs that I recently gave to a museum. The research that she did was thorough and prompt and written up in an excellent and professional manner for IRS review.
— Sherwin Simmons, Professor Emeritus Art History (2014)
Jennifer exceeded my expectations. Upon meeting with her I experienced a gracious, unassuming, non-judgmental person. She not only looked carefully at my work, but also answered my questions in great detail. She opened up the business part of the art world in such a comprehensive manner. […] I continue to work with her and feel that anyone requiring consultation services would do well to choose her; she is a true expert in her field.
—Toby MacLennan, Artist, New York (2014)
Of all the appraisers I’ve worked with in documenting charitable gifts of artwork, your work product was the most complete and professional, providing all of the information required for a valid deduction.
—Richard Solomon, CPA