With the Olympics Upon Us, Expect More Attention for Chinese Contemporary Art.
But with Sales Slowing and Prices Causing Consternation, Chinese Collectors are Looking for Other Ways to Value Their Art.
NPR offers this report on Chinese Contemporary art. But China’s top collector–Guan Yi–doesn’t think price is a useful way to value art. He’s got 800 pieces, a third of which are large installation works, and he’s planning a large museum in central Beijing to show them. Mr. Guan’s fascinating interview can be read here and here. But some excerpts will get you motivated:
He says he is increasingly frustrated by the rampant speculation in the Chinese art market which is making it difficult for talented young artists to emerge today. He also sees the lack of professional art critics in China as another big problem. The tendency in China to equate high prices with art historical importance is hampering the development of significant work, he says.
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After I started buying art, I realised that the whole system for collecting contemporary art in China was organised for foreign buyers, everything was going abroad. No one Chinese was collecting contemporary art. This got me very excited. I thought that what I could do was come up with a method to save some contemporary art for China.
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Another factor is that they will just look at my collection and say “this art is very expensive”, there’s no understanding of whether it is good or not. So no one understands its value and this is a real problem. Before my collection is handed back to the country or society, I will have to wait, until they are clearer about what it is.
Meet China’s Top Collector of Contemporary Art (The Art Newspaper)
Chinese Contemporary Art Gains New Audience (NPR)