Scott Reyburn might be trying to read too much into the recent off-season sales in London but his weekly International New York Times column focuses on the action at Phillips Under the Influence sale and early reserves at Art Cologne for the kinds of works that seem to be made to flip:
The Flip Art aesthetic practiced by artists like Mr. Rees, Mr. Smith, Mr. Murillo, Mr. Ito and other wunderkinder is instantly recognizable. They make abstract paintings that are a clever play on the act of painting. These abstracts often employ novel — not to mention cheap — painting techniques, such as using a fire extinguisher (Mr. Smith) or home improvement products (Mr. Rees). They’re often big, and have significant wall power. Equally important, there are plenty of them. Mr. Smith, for example, has produced as many as 300 of his paint-droplet “Rain” canvases, according to dealers. Mass production allows artists to make as much money as possible. It also enables contemporary art investors, nervous of notions of rarity, to buy multiple works and to track their price fluctuations, like a commodity, on databases such as Artnet. Flip Art, like Andy Warhol’s Factory-produced Pop Art, can be as reassuringly numerous and uniform as gambling chips.
Hot New Artists, Getting Hotter (NYTimes)