Sunday, September 2, 2012

Art market experiencing strong growth

New auction records have been set in the last two years that point to a reasonably recovering if not booming market.  In 2010, Picasso’s ‘Nude, Green Leaves and Bust’ was sold for the sum of 106.5 million dollars at Christie's, making it the most expensive painting ever sold at auction, whereas ‘L'homme qui marche’, the Giacometti sculpture, went for 104.3 million dollars.

In May this year, ‘The Scream’ by Edvard Munch fetched a record price of 119.9 million dollars, the highest amount ever paid for any painting at an international auction. Just a couple of weeks later, as the Eurozone crisis seemed to deepen, Franz West’s ‘Gekroese’ was reportedly sold for more than 1 million dollars at Art Basel, among the world's top art fairs.

However, these are not isolated cases. Roy Lichtenstein, Joan Miro, Jackson Pollock, Ai Weiwei and many other artists have witnessed record prices for their works in the recent months - with ninety percent of the top ten price points ever touched for art in public auctions and private sales happening since 2006. These developments are consistent with the prevailing perception that the art market is experiencing strong growth.

An earlier research report compiled by thematic & derivatives research fellow Roger Signer along with his colleague Dominique Baumann at Credit Suisse had underlined the fact that demand for art was largely being driven by growing wealth, especially in the emerging countries. The two stated that it would continue to rise further thanks to new wealth sources established, in the countries like China, Russia, and the Arab world. Investors from these parts of the world have already become the most powerful and defining buyer groups at top international art auctions. Because of them, art is enjoying a renaissance.

This positive trend continues to be affirmed by the AMR Art 100 Top 25 percent Index, based on the median of the top 25% of prices attained and is updated on monthly basis.

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