The Trail of Lot 163 presents a unique insider’s view of the art world. Philip Mould – a dealer at the forefront of his profession – reveals the exhilarating processes of identification, deduction and restoration which can turn a grubby misattributed ‘sleeper’ into a major masterpiece. Through gripping real-life stories, Mould brings to life the people – professional and amateur – who have made these discoveries both here and abroad. In this absorbing and thrilling book, Philip Mould introduces us to the auctioneers who endeavour to ensure that ‘sleepers’ are spotted before they come up for sale, and to the dealers whose job it is to outwit them. With all the insight and expertise of the consummate player, he describes the high-risk, high-stakes game of art dealing – a game of hair-trigger intuition, of poker nerves and pumping adrenalin, of fierce rivalry and ruthless competition.