As we are entering the new year, we’d like to share with you our thoughts on what is going to happen in the art world in 2015.
Although the economic woes in the Eurozone and unrest in the rest of the world will, most likely, affect the middle and lower ends of the market, we believe that at the high end, top artworks will continue to generate record prices. As art is now accepted as an asset class, there will be an continued interest in using art as a financial tool, for example, as a collateral for loans. As a result of this emphasis on the (oftentimes high) monetary value of artworks and art collections, clients and their financial and legal advisors are starting to expect more from art professionals: for example transparency on fees, discretion and an avoidance of conflict of interest, which we heartily support! At Tang, we are our clients’ fiduciaries which, means that we only act in our clients’ best interests.
Additionally, technology continues to influence the market in two major ways. Firstly, more art transactions are taking place online each year as trading platforms are being built, tested and fine-tuned. Coupled with an increased interest in private sales, buyers and art professionals are attracted to the ease of buying or selling from their desktop. Secondly, the internet levels the playing field for many businesses: if they are smart about their online strategy smaller companies can have as much of a wide and international reach as their larger competitors. This, among other reasons, will fuel the competition between auction houses with the smaller, regional auctioneers slowly starting to gain market share at the cost of the two global powerhouses.