Agence France Presse has some interesting commentary on the art market in their report on ARCO’s opening. This echoes a Manhattan gallerists rant early this week at a Madison Ave. event where the gallerist complained that sales were confined to the very wealthy. Works priced around $10,000, this dealer said, were impossible to move and the gallery had begun to resort to gimmicks involving donations and taxes to drive sales.
Meanwhile, at ARCO, organizers are touting art as an investment but advisors see a wasteland in the middle market:
The organisers said art was one of the best performing investment products in 2010, with an average appreciation of 25 percent compared to 9.0 percent for the Dow Jones industrial average or 11 percent for Britain’s FTSE share index. […] “The middle market is suffering much more because prices have not come down that much, people are still worried about their jobs,” said Judith Selkowitz, the director of Art Advisory Services, a US-based art consultancy for corporate and private collectors. “Things in the category of between 50,000 and 200,000 dollars have sufferered.”