Profile wins Whitfield's 'ruthless' art memoir in three-way auction

Profile wins Whitfield's 'ruthless' art memoir in three-way auction

Profile has won a three-way auction for debut author Orlando Whitfield's All That Glitters: A Story of Friendship, Fraud and Fine Art, a "razor-sharp" memoir of greed and ambition in the fine art industry.

UK and Commonwealth rights were acquired from John Ash at PEW Literary by publishing director Cecily Gayford. North American rights were pre-empted for "a significant figure" by Shelley Wanger at Pantheon. All That Glitters will be published on 4th May 2023.

The synopsis explains: "All That Glitters is a story about the secret places where art and money collide. Of how a dazzling rise can become an illusion, then a scandal, and then a disaster. The story of a young art dealer, Orlando Whitfield, and how he became entangled in a world that was wealthier and wilder than he could ever have imagined. In this ruthless, high-stakes arena, a terrain of power and booms and inflation which represents the peak of 21st century capitalism, those involved are faced with dangerous incentives and the all-consuming pressure to succeed at the highest level – at any cost."

Gayford said: "It’s not every day you pick up a proposal that sparkles – but All That Glitters had me pinned to the page, fascinated and enthralled and obsessed from the very first sentence. We are so proud to be working with Orlando, and publishing his brilliant, razor-sharp account of the contemporary art world."

Graduating top of his class with a degree in art history from Goldsmiths University, Whitfield started dealing in modern and contemporary art while still a student and has worked in the market in some capacity for 15 years. His writing has appeared in the Paris Review, White Review and Dazed & Confused. All That Glitters is his first book.

He said: "I am thrilled that my book will be published by Profile, a publisher I have long admired, and over the moon to have such an intelligent and sympathetic editor in Cecily Gayford. If only every first-time writer were as fortunate."