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ArtMarket® Insight - what's trending on the art market

Artprice's Latest Report

ArtMarket® Insight contents

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International contemporary art driven by Phillips, De Pury & Luxembourg [23 Nov 2003]

The contemporary art market has been doing fairly well of late, and the last big auctions of the year have reaffirmed the trend. The wealthiest US investors are continuing to support new art. Record after record has been falling in New York, and not only for American artists.

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Gloomy times for impressionists while modernists triumph [16 Nov 2003]

The US art market was in fine form at the Impressionism and Modern Art evening sales. Thanks to a number of wealthy American bidders, several major lots went for more than their high estimates. A healthy 75 of 102 lots put up found buyers on the evenings of 4 and 5 November, and total turnover was USD 216 million.

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Edward Weston (1886-1958) [06 Nov 2003]

New record for Edward Weston confirms 137% price surge for the master of modern American photography.

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James Rosenquist (1933) [29 Oct 2003]

Rosenquist has one of the lowest price indexes among pop artists. The retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum might create renewed interest.

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New York under the spotlight [22 Oct 2003]

The evenings of 4 and 5 November see two of the biggest media events of the year: the eagerly awaited New York Impressionist & Modern Art sales. The art market is generally having a thin time, but is the same true at the very top end? We will find out when we see how the world’s wealthiest collectors receive the exceptional pieces on the stands in New York.

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Edouard Manet (1832 – 1883) [21 Oct 2003]

After many years in the doldrums, the overall price index of Edouard Manet is up by 66% since the start of the year.

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Testing times for photography [15 Oct 2003]

While few segments of the art market have escaped the current depression some are being especially hard hit. This is particularly true of photography. After riding the speculative wave of 1997-2001, prices have crashed since the start of the year. The crisis is all the more striking as it comes straight after a boom in the sector.

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Symbolism: strongly-contrasting price fluctuations in a multi-faceted movement. [09 Oct 2003]

Around 1890, in a reaction against impressionism and the creeping materialism of the industrial revolution, a new pictorial language began to emerge across Europe, symbolism. Not content with reproducing the real world, the symbolists broke away from narrative and landscape art and its canons, and sought to connect with their viewers’ sensitivity through shapes and colours. Prices for their work have risen steadily in the past 10 years (+116% between 1992 and June 2003), but the diverse personalities and nationalities making up the symbolism movement is reflected in a wide variation in prices.

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Art Market Alert III [08 Oct 2003]

Finding a niche in a declining market.

Collectors are being bombarded with offers aimed at reviving the current sluggish market. But the figures tell a different story. The buy-in ratio over the last six months has averaged 37% and auction houses are increasingly struggling to fill their catalogues. By 23 September, only 185 fine art sales had been announced for October 2003 compared to 263 a year earlier.

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Art market alert II: A string of black Septembers [06 Oct 2003]

First volumes slumped and then prices. For the third consecutive year, September 2003 has brought a crisis. But unlike previous years, this one seems here to stay. Can the market still recover?

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Keith Haring (1958 – 1990) [29 Sep 2003]

Haring was one of the leading lights of American graffiti. His prices rose steadily in the 1990s but recent months have seen a decline.

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Bumper year for Italian contemporary art market [18 Sep 2003]

The market for contemporary art may be shrinking everywhere else, but in Italy both value and volume sales are booming. In the first half of 2003, Italy accounted for 5% of the market by value and 19.6% by volume, with 1,085 lots generating sales worth EUR 2.2 million.

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Jean Cocteau (1889-1963) [16 Sep 2003]

Despite the publicity surrounding an exhibition at the Musée National d’Art Moderne (Paris), Jean Cocteau’s price index has slumped this year, dropping by 18% between January and September.

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French contemporary art market under pressure [10 Sep 2003]

FIAC, France’s biggest contemporary art fair, runs from 9-13 October 2003, with 174 galleries and an estimated 70,000 collectors expected to attend. With doors due to open in a few days, Artprice takes the pulse of one of the market’s most volatile segments.

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Alert on the art market [07 Sep 2003]

At Artprice through the extensive coverage of 2,900 auction houses, we have the tools to pick up the slightest flicker of life on the art market*. But readings since July have been desperately flat. The market is suffering a severe dearth of supply and sale after sale is being put back to the point where virtually nothing is coming onto the stands. Auctioneers’ turnover since July 15 is a quarter what it was in the same period of 2000.

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Mark Rothko (1903 – 1970) [02 Sep 2003]

With a bought-in lots rate of just 6%, Rothko paintings are among the most eagerly sought in the US.

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Who leads the global art market? [28 Aug 2003]

Now there are not one, but two, leaders in the art world. In the first half of 2003 New York and London shared the honours, both with market shares close to 36%. In July, London actually beat New York on turnover,

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US impressionists down as home economy sags [24 Aug 2003]

Hammer prices for US impressionists have slumped in the last six months, as the local American demand that usually supports the market has dried up. In the last three years the school’s price index has fallen by 33%.

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Pierre Soulages (1919) [19 Aug 2003]

The Bibliothèque Nationale de France is currently hosting the first-ever virtually complete retrospective of Soulages’s engravings, which make up almost three quarters of its works sold at auction.

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AMERICAN POP ART: +160% in 10 years [12 Aug 2003]

Pop art blurred the lines between fine art and its commercial cousin — an astute business move, apparently, as prices at auction now spiral beyond the reach of many collectors.

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Tom Wesselmann (born 1931) [11 Aug 2003]

In 2002, with the « Great American Nude #44 », Tom Wesselman was one of the 5 Pop’Art artists who set a new record. But, such record apart, 80% of Wesselmann’s works go for less than USD 15,000

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Contemporary photographers rise in the east [03 Aug 2003]

A wave of enthusiasm among younger generation collectors has driven contemporary photography prices up by 92% in less than six years, an annual growth rate of more than 12.7%. This kind of speculative rally used to be the preserve of big name German and US photographers, but in the last few months the market seems to have been led by less renowned artists of other nationalities.

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Market trends since last summer [28 Jul 2003]

The structure of the world’s art market has continued to mutate over the last 12 months or so. Though the climate that offers little prospect of growth, a few countries have been able to grab market share. A drift away from the US and towards France and the UK was first apparent in 2001, and has continued unabated in the last year.

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Prices kept rising in the first half of 2003 [27 Jul 2003]

While the world’s stock markets have languished, at least until President Bush declared the end of combat operations in Iraq, art market prices have been rising uninterruptedly since the start of the year. The only noticeable impact of the Iraq war has been a fall in volume.

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The top artists from the London summer auctions [21 Jul 2003]

Sotheby’s and Christie’s held their London Impressionist and Modern Art auctions on 23-24 June. With over 80% lots sold and a turnover of GBP 63 million at two evening sessions, the auctions were encouraging without being spectacular.

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Which countries are driving the rise in prices? [10 Jul 2003]

Although art market prices have been rising again this season only 116 lots topped the million euro mark in the first six months of 2003, compared to 164 in the same period last year.

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Ansel Adams (1902-1984) [09 Jul 2003]

A touring exhibition, Ansel Adams at 100, celebrating the centenary of the US photography master, opened in his home town of San Francisco in 2001, and is now showing at the Museum of Modern Art Queens (New-York) until November 2003. Adams is the fifth biggest-selling photographer at auction.

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How does the French contemporary art market measure up today? [30 Jun 2003]

Since it reformed its auctioneers, France has increased its share of the auction market from 7% of worldwide turnover in 2001, to 8.6% in 2002. Yet growth in the wider sector has done little for the contemporary art market. France only generated 4.5% of the proceeds from contemporary artworks in 2002.

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Rembrandt Van Rijn (1606-1669) [25 Jun 2003]

This master of the Dutch School, had a prolific output, with some 600 paintings, 300 prints and 1,400 drawings. But barely a dozen have been seen in auction rooms in the last ten years.

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Art market cycles [19 Jun 2003]

The international auction calendar is the main driver of the art market cycle. The heart of the market shifts week by week, largely in line with what auctions are coming up on the three leading markets in France, the US and the UK.

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