Art defeats luxury during crisis
The days when hungry clients in emerging markets would clean out a Vuitton store’s handbag stock are gone, and in a similar vein auctions are no longer the site of breathless bidding frenzies, nor are gallery shows selling out before they open. The buzzword of “value” that has become gospel for the fashion and luxury world has caught on in art circles as well, as collectors judge potential acquisitions less on impulse and more on criteria such as pedigree, historic performance and a piece’s relevance within an artist’s larger oeuvre.
Post-auction results bulletins from houses such as Christie’s, Sotheby’s and Phillips de Pury are principal indicators of market health, studied by collectors similarly to how investors view quarterly corporate results – they upgrade or downgrade artists and contextualize potential purchases in upcoming sales. Artnet’s online sales reports comprehensively track prices across the market, not just of a particular auction house. Collectors comfortable with the internet have been able to benefit greatly from this market breakdown and the resource promises to be of growing importance for a younger generation of tech-savvy collectors.
an excerpt from Art After the Fall: A More Rational Strategy by Sameer Reddy LUXURYSOCIETY