Since founding Gallery Auctions in 1984, Vikki Vines, 69, has developed and expanded the company offering a wide selection of beautiful antiques, mid-century modern items, and new home furnishings.
Vines always had a flair for trading and reselling, a talent passed down from her father, who filled her with adventures through Abilene’s junkyards, searching for items that could be flipped for profit. But it wasn’t until she was in her 30s with one-year-old-son in tow that she began to pursue being an auctioneer.
Vines’ son, Jon Goodling, a 39-year-old gay man, attended Houston Baptist University for three years before deciding to join Gallery Auctions full time in 2003. That was also when he became a Texas licensed auctioneer. His avid interest in mid-century modern furniture, furnishings, and art has led him to be recognized as a leading provider of significant, authentic mid-century modern products to the trade. He is recognized nationally and internationally as a constant buyer of premier mid-century modern furniture and furnishings in multiple countries. His favorite personal style is mid-century, while Vines tends toward art nouveau.
Vines and her son travel the world to carefully select items for their auctions and sell three-to-four hundred lots every week. “We import containers of furniture and decorative arts from around the world,” says Goodling, who is in awe of his mother’s talents. “If I’m half the woman she is when I grow up, I’ll be doing fine,” he laughs.
For decades, Gallery Auctions was known for its in-house auctions with large crowds, but COVID-19 changed that a lot.
“It drastically changed the way we do business,” Goodling says. “We painted a wall white and bought an expensive camera and started selling on an online platform.” The move catapulted Gallery Auctions onto the international scene of selling, allowing Gallery Auctions to be reborn. After the first couple of weeks, the company’s auction sales grew every single month. It is now ranked in the 99th percentile for customer response and is the number one most watched auction on Live Auctioneers. It also increased the non-trade business as anyone can view the auctions online.
Everyone can participate and bid in Gallery Auctions’ auction items every week. Mostly a wholesale trade level auction company with wholesale trade level prices, they offer tremendous savings and an incredible variety of selections. Every style of furniture—from brand new showroom merchandise, mid-century, leather, garden items, antiques, rugs, chandeliers and more—is sold at a fraction of its retail price. And it’s fun, Vines and Goodling note. Bidders have a real thrill of acquisition and buyers can purchase something and receive it quickly with no back orders. Buying at Gallery Auctions is the ultimate recycling and environmentally responsible way to furnish one’s life.
Vines says she does nothing in moderation, lives loudly, boldly, and very productively. As advantageous as this is for her antique auction company, she is proud to share her voice and talent with multiple charity organizations. She has been involved in charity auctions for over 15 years and participates in over 20 events per year.
In the auction house, Vines is in the unique position of providing her customers with the best price possible, while ensuring her shippers remain satisfied enough to continue sending her treasures. When Vines takes the auction stand at a charity event, anyone can see that she simply loves to have one job and one job only—to earn money for the charity of the night. Vines’ decades of experience as an auctioneer proves to be both fun and profitable for every charity with which she associates.
Both Vines and Goodling find Houston a friendly diversified culturally interesting shopping mecca with the best food selection anywhere. They are both foodies and Houston is the ultimate smorgasbord of international flavors available to fit anyone’s budget.
Goodling is big on Vietnamese, and his favorite places are Heights Asian Café, Lei Low Bar, and King’s BierHaus. Vines loves it all—Lorenzo’s on Washington is her go-to restaurant, but she also enjoys homestyle food at Mom’s Country Kitchen on the northside. When not dining out, Vines can also be found cheering on her favorite sports team, the Houston Astros.
For more information on Gallery Auctions, visit galleryauctions.com or call 281-931-0100.