While the Eurozone crisis and rumors of a property bubble burst slowed the art market in the fall of 2011, Chinese art auctions still made record sales. According to a report released by research company ArtTactic, Poly Auction and China Guardian have taken the lead in terms of overall market share.

Yue Minjun's 'Untitled' failed to sell at Sotheby's Hong Kong Autumn 2011 Sale of contemporary Asian art.

According to ArtTactic,

Record year for the Chinese art market, despite slow down in second half of 2011

With the economic problems in Europe intensifying in the autumn of 2011,the steam also seems to be coming out of China’s economy. Economic growth forecast has been set to 8.5 percent for 2012, down from 9.3 percent this year.

Although, the total (big four) auction sales for autumn 2011, was down 16 percent from spring 2011, Last year still marked a record year for the Chinese art market, up 34 percent from 2010. The mainland Chinese art market (based on results from China Guardian and Poly Auction) was largely responsible for this, with total sales value amounting to 0.1 billion in 2011, up from 0.2 billion in 2010. Christie’s and Sotheby’s in Hong Kong also experienced robust growth in 2011, with total auction sales of 0.7 billion, against 0.4 billion in 2010. Among the Big Four auction houses (Christie’s, Sotheby’s, Poly and China Guardian) the domestic auction houses achieved a 64 percent market share in 2011, versus 62 percent in 2010.

Whilst Poly and China Guardian have taken the lead in terms of overall market share, Christie’s and Sotheby’s have regained their position in the contemporary Chinese art market, which they lost in 2010. The two international auction houses gained a 65 percent share of the Chinese contemporary art market in 2011, up from 46 percent in 2010. The Chinese contemporary art market saw its total sales value this autumn drop by 28 percent from the spring sales. However,despite the slowdown in the second half, the total for 2011 was up 61 percent on last year.

Click here to access the report on the ArtTactic website (pay per report or free for subscribers).


Related Topics: business of art, market watch – auctionsart and recession

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By Brittney

Brittney is a writer, curator and contemporary art gallerist. Born in Singapore and based in New York City, Brittney maintains a deep interest in the contemporary art landscape of Southeast Asia. This is combined with an equally strong interest in contemporary art from the Asian diasporas, alongside the issues of identity, transmigration and global relations.

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