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Channel Thirteen’s Metrofocus blog spoke to the art handlers who have been locked out since August 1 from Sotheby’s. They recorded stories about their experiences on the job and what it’s like to handle art at one of the world’s largest auction houses. Their comments are endearing and give you some insight into who these working men are.

Their answers to the reporter’s question demonstrate why their jobs are a labor of love and what Sotheby’s is losing in the process. Here are some notable comments:

Luis Baucage, 44, “I can tell you the difference between a fake Louis XV chair and a real one just by looking at the screws; most were jointed together by dovetails, not using screws.”

Anwarii Musan, 24, “My options were to either work here or to take a job in construction. I wanted to develop a career path and expand my horizons so I decided to become an art handler.

It’s a blessing just to be around art everyday. I’m exposed to so many different cultures and styles of art…One day I’m handling American contemporary paintings and the next it’s vases from South East Asia.”‘

Sim Jones, 65, “After 40 years of handling art for the same auction house, I’ve realized that, as a people, we are all really similar to each other.”

The whole post is here.

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Hrag Vartanian

Hrag Vartanian is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Hyperallergic. You can follow him at @hragv.