The folks at Artnet were kind enough to run some figures for us on the Paris auction market. You can see from the first chart below that Paris has grown substantially nearly tripling from 2004 until last year with the extraordinary spike of the Yves Saint-Laurent/Pierre Bergé sale in 2009.
This growth may not match other sales centers but it definitely shows that Paris is tracking along with market growth.
What’s more interesting about Paris is the steady growth of the Contemporary category. Like the rest of the art market, Contemporary art has taken on a central role in the market. Though in Paris, the Modern category still held a slight $5m edge in total sales volume over Contemporary in 2013. That’s small consolation for Modern works which once had pride of place but now see a market convergence.
Finally, although there are a number of auction houses active in the Paris market, the consistent names at the top of the market-share leaderboard are Artcurial, Christie’s and Sotheby’s. Christie’s role in the YSL/Bergé sale gave the house incomparable dominance in 2009. But over the last two years, Sotheby’s has eeked ahead.