James Tarmy predicts a new era of American art buying to rival the early 20th Century when Joseph Duveen filled American collections for Hearst, Morgan, Rockefeller, Mellon and Kress:
“The euro is just killing Europe, but it’s killing Italy more than anything else,” says Otto Naumann, a New York-based old masters dealer. “I haven’t seen any Italian collectors buying anything.” Across the continent, goods from furniture to video art to 600-year-old oil paintings are increasingly harder for Europeans to purchase and, accordingly, much harder for them to sell at a significant profit.
Their misfortune is American buyers’ gain. As the euro sinks, the U.S. dollar has strengthened relative to other currencies, thanks in part to the continued U.S. economic recovery and the end of the Federal Reserve’s bond-buying program. “It’s a very good time to be an American buyer,” says Amy Cappellazzo, a founder and principal of Art Agency Partners and the former chairman of postwar and contemporary art at Christie’s. “The dollar is strong, and there’s less competition.” The coming months could see a repeat of the early 20th century, when millionaire American industrialists swept through Europe buying up paintings and collectibles from impoverished aristocrats.
Declining Euro Currency Jolts Art Market (Bloomberg Business)