The latest Art Basel and UBS Art Market Report has been released.
Here are some of the most interesting data and key findings of this growing and evolving market.
Sales in the global art market reached $63.7 billion in 2017, up 12% from 2016.
This is a very positive trend since for the last two year the growth in sales has been negative.
Dealer sales in 2017 reached an estimated $33.7 billion, up 4% year-on-year.
In 2017, aggregate sales by dealers accounted for a larger share of the market, at 53% by value, while geographically the three largest markets of the US, China, and the UK
accounted for 83% of total global sales by value.
Sales in the major art markets all advanced year-on-year in 2017: in the US by 16% to $26.6 billion; in China by 14% to $13.2 billion; and in the UK by 8% to $12.9 billion.
The Contemporary Art segment has been growing quickly over the last few years, as a matter of fact, the majority Auction Houses and International Fairs' sales in 2017 were made in this field.
Focus on the Online Market
One of the most evident trends was the Online Market development.
This market has increased in size by 72% over the last five years.
It was estimated to have reached a new high of $5.4 billion in 2017, up 10% year-on-year and accounting for 8% of the value of global sales.
Online sales have been a key method to access new buyers: dealers reported that 45% of their online buyers were new to their businesses in 2017 and most of the traditional offline dealers recognized the online channel as a key area of growth over the next five years.
Some of the most successful actors in the online market in 2017 have been third-party platforms, which are marketplaces that operate in the primary market as intermediaries between galleries and collectors all over the world.
This trend can be explained analyzing the art market that is now more dynamic and global than ever, the collectors are increasingly browsing artworks online and there is also a rising demand for clear information on pricing of artworks.
The main challenge for all of the companies in the online art market continues to be gaining the attention of buyers and sellers, consequently, the use Social Media has grown in importance, and while it has been well established as a tool for building brand awareness, many galleries are now increasingly exploring its use as a more proactive marketing and sales tool.
Source: Art Basel and UBS' Global Art Market Report 2018
Prepared by Dr. Clare McAndrew