Alright already! I got it. I understand the economy is in the crapper, and there are all sorts of bubbles bursting (is any one else envisioning rockets red glare?). But do we need analysts telling us that the art market bubble has burst as well? Read the latest doom and gloom from Alexandra Peers in the Wall Street Journal here.
I'm sick and tired of people talking about the crumbling art market but only referring to what is going on at the major auction houses and the $1,000,000+ sales. This is only a sliver of the real art market. Yes, Sotheby's and Christie's deal in big bucks, but why isn't anyone testing the temperature of the grass roots art market – you know, the art that sells for a lot of zeros less than a Damien Hirst diamond encrusted skull? A vast majority of professional artists sell their original work at the under-$10,000 level. Laura and I strongly believe some of the best and most creative contemporary art out there can be had for $1,000-$10,000 (even less if you are vigilant and savvy). And most commercial art galleries throughout the country sell work in this range as well.
We have all heard plenty about the demise of the housing market. I'm certain when determining the health of housing no analyst is only looking at the sales of the $1,000,000+ mega mansions. They are looking at the whole market... all homes.... even those priced under $150,000. Don't people who live in these homes buy original art too? So why isn't the entire art market examined before declaring its bubble burst?
As a commercial gallery in the "trenches", I can say that this slumping economy has definitely reared its ugly head - we have heard some recent stories from clients who are victims of corporate layoffs and those who are putting purchases on hold for the time being - but that doesn’t spell the demise of the art market. Beautiful and meaningful still sells – no matter what direction the Dow is headed.