Saturday, June 22, 2013

Broader trends in global art market

The post-War & contemporary art markets sure are red hot. Contemporary art sales have grown to about $6 billion last year from $850 million a decade ago in total value. According to artnet, this noteworthy development needs to be juxtaposed with a gradual fall in modern, impressionist & old masters’ prices.

Another key trend is emergence of South-East Asian art and China’s uninterrupted rise as a global art powerhouse. Chinese buyers are more focused on their own artists. What this means is that they don’t create a huge effect on Western favorites like pop art and abstract impressionism.

In the last week of May, Evening Sale conducted by Christie's of Asian 20th Century & Contemporary Art in Hong Kong totaled $53,736,025, selling in excess of 90 percent by lot and 91 percent by value. It saw four new world auction records getting established: Singaporean artist Georgette Chen’s ‘Still Life with Tropical Fruits’ going for $656,565; ‘Nudes on Horseback’ Yun Gee (Zhu Yuanzhi) fetching $ 1,480,185, ‘PixCell-Coyote#3’ by Japan’s Kohei Nawa receiving $361,305 and ‘La marchande de riz’ (The Rice Seller) by Vietnam’s Nguyen Phan Chanh drawing $392,385.

Part of the several trillion US dollars released thanks to Federal Reserve chairman’s Ben S. Bernanke continuing stimulus packages apart from trillions more in other top currencies printed by central banks across the globe have trickled into the art market, to prop it up. Suzanne Gyorgy, the Citi Art Advisory (Citigroup’s private bank service) head, states, “For many people art is an interesting alternative investment. It’s seen as a hedge against inflation and a safe haven in the high end of the market.”

The trend is very much clear! Increasingly, the wealthy are pumping their capital into luxury investments seen more as alternatives. A recent Forbes new report reveals that Steve Cohen, a hedge fund hotshot, paid more than $150 million (a record price according to market observers) for a Pablo Picasso piece earlier owned by billionaire Steve Wynn.

No comments:

Post a Comment