Many of our Park West collectors develop friendships with the art teams over the course of their land or sea vacations. Here’s a chance to get to know them better as they share their favorite adventures in the art world.
Jason Betteridge – originally from St. Mary’s, Ontario, Canada – was living in Los Angeles, California playing the drums professionally when he got a call from his agent to perform for two weeks on a cruise ship. He had never cruised before and, not knowing what to expect, reluctantly accepted the opportunity. The booking only required that he play two shows during the whole two weeks so he had ample free time and was drawn to the atmosphere of the art auctions. That was in 2002, shortly thereafter he began his career as an auctioneer. Fourteen years later, Jason is still auctioneering with Park West’s VIP program.
Previous ships as Auctioneer: Jason’s first ship as principal auctioneer was Royal Caribbean Majesty of the Seas and his last was the Carnival Conquest.
Current position: As a VIP Auctioneer, Jason can be found aboard one of the many Park West ships hosting a VIP cruise or enjoying the weekend at a VIP event on land.
What do you like most about being an auctioneer?
Jason: I live for the auctions! I enjoy working in a “theatre-style” sales position. Since I have spent a large portion of my life on stage, I appreciate the tradition of the auctioneer as an educator and entertainer.
What do you enjoy most about working with the VIP program?
Jason: The team members that I travel with have become my family. I have worked and travelled with the same core associates in the VIP team for the better part of a decade. My wife is part of the VIP program as well, even though she doesn’t travel with the team full time. We have had great experiences around the world. There has never been a boring day on the job.
Who is your favorite Park West artist and why?
Jason: This is a tough one. I have become very good friends with most of the artists that I have worked with. Most of the paintings we own have become an extension of the memories my wife and I have with those artists. They are all like family, so choosing a favorite would be impossible.
What is your favorite Park West memory?
Jason: Over the years, I have met many great clients and have experienced some pretty amazing moments with them. We have had VIP events take us all over the world from the backyard of Cezanne’s home in Nice, France to Stonehenge. I have shared cocktails with our clients on a private island in the Canary Islands, enjoyed dinner theatres in Monte Carlo and rang the peace bell in Hiroshima. The concept of collecting art has really evolved into the “experience” of collecting through our VIP program and I am quite proud of that.
My favorite moment was roughly 12 years ago. I was an auctioneer on the Carnival Pride sailing out of Los Angeles. A young associate named Laura signed on to train with me and assist with the onboard auction program. Laura and I have now been married for 10 years and we have two beautiful daughters, Lexi and Isla.
What is your favorite port?
Jason: I have enjoyed Santorini for years. Anyone who has travelled to this Greek Island can surely attest to its beauty. My wife and I have enjoyed vacationing in Ko Samui, Thailand and Dubai, but lately, home has become a very welcomed port of call.