Sales at Sotheby's, Christie's and Phillips in London, New York and Hong Kong were down in the first quarter of 2019 from the levels reached the previous year. Over the last decade in the art market, sales seem to follow cyclical patterns where volume rises and falls with some regularity.
The most important recent year in the art market was 2016 when sales dropped dramatically from the previous year and, even, the two subsequent years. This year's results so far show the market moving back toward a position midway between strong years like 2014-15 and 2017-18.
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