Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sales drop as Indian art loses stock

Sunday Independent
10 May 2009
Peter De Ionno

Confidence levels in the once- booming market for Indian art have dropped 63 percent since October as prices slide, according to a report published on Thursday by the research company ArtTactic.

ArtTactic’s confidence index for Indian contemporary art alone declined by 90 percent during the same period.

The indexes reflect the balance between optimistic and pessimistic art-market professionals. About a third of respondents believed the market for modern Indian art would rebound within two years. More than half thought demand for contemporary works would take between three and 10 years to recover, said the report.

“Problems first appeared in September 2008, around the time of the Damien Hirst sale,” said Anders Petterson, the founder of ArtTactic, referring to the UK artist’s auction at Sotheby’s that raised £111.5 million (R1.4 billion at Friday’s rate) and coincided with the collapse of Lehman Brothers. – Bloomberg

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