Colin Gleadell pays attention to an interesting revival of the sporting art market through Dreweatts:
According to Art Market Research, average prices for the top 25 British sporting artists at auction between 2010 and 2015 jumped by 118 per cent, or by 14.3 per cent per annum. But this was because three major George Stubbs paintings were sold, such as his £22.4 million painting of Gimcrack, which would have had a distorting impact on the index. In contrast, the index for the central 50 per cent of prices for these artists from 2010 to 2015 fell by 22.8 per cent or 4.3 per cent per annum.
Specialist dealer Jamie Rountree says “there is a lot of demand at the top end, from Texas and the Middle East, for the best work by specific artists, especially for racing scenes by Stubbs and Munnings. But the middle market from £10,000 to £250,000 has been a bit up and down. Buyers have been looking to decorate rather than collect. Sporting art in this range is very cheap at the moment and an excellent investment.”
Specialised auctions are rarer than they used to be. Sotheby’s and Christie’s include the best sporting art in their Old Master or 19th-century sales. Christie’s regular lower-value sporting art sales at its South Kensington branch appear to have been sidelined, with sporting pictures squeezed in with Victorian, Maritime and British Impressionist pictures in one sale this June. This is where Harvey has spotted a gap in the market; one that he thinks Dreweatts can fill.
Art Sales: sporting art is back in the saddle (Telegraph)