Last week, ArtPrice put out their report on the Contemporary art market hoping to catch a contact high from FIAC. The firm’s obsession with China is immediately apparent (as is some of their stranger self-promotion about the “de-materializing” art market,) but lack of reliable data from China means those sales and artists need to be viewed with some skepticism. How much of the spectacular numbers seen during the first half of this year is a product of adding domestic Chinese sales to totals that previously did not record Chinese sales. Nonetheless, ArtPrice.com says a record 34,700 works of Contemporary art were sold during the 12-month period from July of 2010 to June of 2011. Those works were sold for €895m. And that is only publicly auctioned work:
Finally, after the jump, you can see the top 50 Contemporary artists on Artprice’s list of 500 auctioned artists. Again, the list is over populated with Chinese names whose work is not well known in the West. Even so, there are some very interesting rankings, including Jean-Michel Basquiat’s position at number 1. Notice the volume of works for Murakami, Nara and Haring.