Art Explosion in the Far East
INSPIRE Travel and Lifestyle Magazine (December 2011) Read full article
by Heidi Lee
“Swooping in to the top buys of the art market, a select group of very powerful and fast acting Chinese buyers are aiding many areas of the art market to thrive amid economic uncertainty. China buoyed by its exponential economic growth has become the second largest art market after the U.S. Hong Kong alone saw an amazing sales turnover increase by 300% from 2009-2010*. Bill Ruprecht, Sotheby’s chief executive, said the Chinese are spending about US$4b a year on Chinese paintings worldwide. This figure is more than Sotheby’s and Christie’s sales last year of Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary art combined and that’s before we factor in the billions they have spent on Western artists.
Chinese collectors typically hon in on their own traditional art, though they also see the value of international artists. In general, younger buyers acquire modern and contemporary Asian art such as Zeng Fanzhi (widely considered as the zeitgeist for the art market), Yue Minjun, Zhang Xiogang, Ai Wei Wei, Yang Fudong, and Lui Yi and mix them with international rising stars like Mark Bradford, Dana Schutz, Sterling Ruby and others….”