Art for art’s sake
The years 2005-2007 witnessed a rather unfavourable boom in the art
market as people followed the herd mentality with anything and everything
being bought. A collapse ensued, reducing the art business to zilch for
many galleries. Even as the current overall market might showcase a
slowdown, 2012 seems to be the year of settlement for art business. It is
a welcome change for the market to meet intelligent and informed buyers
who concentrate on the quality of art before buying a piece.
“Market is now settling
with buyers who double
check what they are
buying. They prefer a piece of
art which interests and
soothes the eye.”
Running the art business for nearly four decades now, founder of Archer
Art Gallery,Anil Relia explains the buying pattern in the last few years.
“Those three years saw business but painted a sorry picture. People indulged
in mindless buying based on what their friends buy or the returns they would
get once they sell the piece. At that time, the artist or quality of the work
was overlooked. Buying art revolved around making money and quick returns
(5-8 years) on investment.”
Today, buyers are keen to know about the background of the artist, his/her
style of work and most importantly, the quality. “Market is now settling with
buyers who double check what they are buying. They prefer a piece of art
which interests and soothes the eye, than just a wall of the house,” said
Dhanvi Shah, MD of Marvel Art Gallery. It is truly said that “Beauty lies in the eye
of the beholder”. The artist maybe young, emerging or established, good art
always has its takers. Shah suggests that all the pieces in a show might not be
sold out but quality works never fail to get clients.
Pocket-friendly buying is another trend emerging in the art market. Pieces of art
are sold on affordable prices or even on EMI basis. Even those who can afford to
splurge, make purchases within a limited budget of Rs5000 to 65,000. The reason for
this, points out Relia, is that art is now measured by its quality and not its price.
“The sudden ballooning of art prices has come to a standstill. Young buyers are now
more aware and read a lot before making a purchase,” says Nayana Soparkar, owner of
Mantra Art Gallery.