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Label: asia

Friday 17th April 2015Affordable Art Fair in Asia

As you've no doubt heard us discussing before, art sales are going through the roof globally, and whether you think the market is in a bubble at the moment or not, global art sales topped $54 billion USD last year and show no signs of slowing down, let alone signs a bursting bubble. That being said, however, most of these sales are of the incredibly high-ticket variety, leaving smaller artists in the lurch.

Naturally, art fairs (another fever that has gripped the art world lately) are a great way for aspiring and undiscovered artists to make contact with a public hungry for original artwork yet unable to foot huge purchase prices. That original goal, however, has been slightly superseded by the buzz that now goes along with art fairs. Take a look at Art Basel in Miami Beach recently, where the stories quickly became about the celebrities who attended rather than about the art itself, and when celebrities arrive, prices skyright.

Will Ramsay, the founder of the Affordable Art Fair, hopes to balance the popularity of the art fair model with the original accessible nature of an art fair. Originally starting out in London in 1999, the Affordable Art Fair has since expanded to 17 cities, and is finding a foothold in the burgeoning Asian art market. Asian expansion started in Singapore with just shy of 10000 visitors, and has since expanded to two fairs a year with over 31000 visitors. The pieces are generally priced starting from $100 USD but not topping $10,000, ensuring that most people will be able to find an original piece that suits their taste.

Speaking to the BBC, Ramsay explained the motivations behind the start of his business, saying, "I used to go to galleries in my early mid-20s, and I felt I was not being helped to learn about art, to understand and to realize that I could afford it, so I thought let's try and democratize it, open it up to a new customer base, and so we want people to come here to realize that you don't have to be a squillionaire to buy art, you don't have to know anything about art to buy it. We're very visually tuned in through magazines, and good cinematography in films, and all that sort of thing, so our taste is more developed than you might think, even if you haven't bought anything before."

While it's less likely that the average buyer is going to see the kind of appreciation on their investment that someone buying a Picasso or a Rembrandt would receive, there is still a tantalising possibility that the original art piece you buy will one day become incredibly valuable.
 

Posted on April 17th 2015 on 06:25pm
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Labels: art fair, asia
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