By Georgina Adam
This hugely readable and well timed e-book explores the transformation of the fashionable and modern paintings industry within the twenty first century from a distinct segment exchange to a globalised operation worthy an envisioned $50 billion a year.
Drawing on her own adventure, the writer describes in attention-grabbing element the contributions made by way of a variety of actors and associations to those fresh advancements. The ebook makes a speciality of the improvement of public sale homes into globalised, usually cutthroat ‘art business’ organisations; the emergence and modi operandi of ‘mega-dealers’ and middlemen; the 'new frontier' of marketing artwork on the net; the unconventional alterations within the profile of paintings creditors; the phenomenon of the ‘branded’ artist and the explosion of artwork festivals. It addresses the adverse facet to the paintings market’s enlargement, rather its loss of transparency and light-weight rules.
The author’s attractive variety makes this informative textual content perfect for creditors, scholars, and an individual drawn to studying extra concerning the evolution of the remarkable marketplace for paintings which exists this day.
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Extra info for Big Bucks: The Explosion of the Art Market in the 21st Century
The question to ask is whether the fact of being taken on by Gagosian or one of the other top gallerists is self-fulfilling and makes the artist a success, or whether the gallerist just recognises and develops existing talent and star potential. By being able to turn an artist into a ‘brand’, by exhibiting them around the world; by being able to fund shows in national museums, and by placing work in leading collections, the galleries can create a star. 65 In her interviews half of the artists cited by the dealers are indeed now established as major names – Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Johns, Warhol, Judd.
The auction houses don’t see it in this light, of course, and argue that it has been a powerful argument to bring in consignments for sale. The fundamental issue is one of transparency, and dealers – who are hardly beacons of transparency themselves – complain that Christie’s system, when the third-party guarantor is rewarded whatever the outcome, means that the actual price published is different from the one paid, since the guarantor gets a kick-back. In this context it is interesting to note, on Christie’s website auction ‘results’ page, the tiny question mark above the price attained for the Bacon and the Koons – both guaranteed – at its November 2013 sale.
And bigger While Gagosian’s real-estate empire beats that of his fellow ‘megadealers’, Zwirner, Hauser & Wirth, Pace and White Cube are expanding physically, as outlined earlier in this chapter. These rival galleries are also run by larger-than-life figures: David Zwirner, in contrast to Gagosian, comes from an art background: his father was the wellknown German dealer Rudolf Zwirner. Ivan Wirth, from Switzerland, is married to Manuela, daughter of the department-store magnate and art collector, Ursula Hauser.
Big Bucks: The Explosion of the Art Market in the 21st Century by Georgina Adam