Monday, April 27, 2009

Business art is the step that comes after Art

You can can feel a shift in the whole art = money thing. Back just a year or two when one of those collecting art as an investment articles hit the papers, the tone was only-buy-it-if-you-love-it and certainly never-buy-just-for-investment.

With Auckland Art Fair fever in the air, the DomPost asked around and came up with a different version of the art/investment feature this weekend. This time it’s in the business section of the paper rather than in the usual entertainment ghetto and attitudes have shifted. Now it’s only-buy-it-if-you-love-it and don’t-sell-short.

Here’s some highlights from the DomPost’s advice to prospective art collectors:

“Hold for the long term, at least 10 years.”

“A gold bar is a gold bar but even Hotere and McCahon have variable output.”

“It costs about $60,000 to enter the blue-chip market.”

“Big traditional artworks that don’t suit apartments don’t sell.”

“Photography is beginning to make inroads.”

“Try to choose passionate artists – they are more likely to be the real deal.”

Unfortunately the cashing-up example they give is a Goldie that was valued in 1975 at $83,000 in today’s prices. The work is currently on offer for between $170,000 and $230,000. Even a plastic piggy bank could do better than that over 34 years.
Most of the current optimism seems to be based on experience of the last big crash in late 1987. Then the art market remained strong right through to the 1990s.

Art Investors, start your engines. You have just over two years.

Header quote: Andy Warhol