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Label: ranking

Thursday 03rd July 2014Are You ArtRank-ed?

Speculation in the art world has always been a bit of a gamble. Much like the great grand-daddy of speculation that is the stock market, huge sums of money are made and lost on a regular basis, as collectors vie with each other to discover the hottest young talent, and gamble on those artists who are currently in the midst of their careers. Some collectors have a knack for it, others are left in the financial dust. Recently, a new service has been shaking things up for collectors and artists alike, and there are those on both sides of the fence who see it as extremely problematic, and perhaps even downright unfair.

The service, which is known as ArtRank, is the brainchild of Argentina-born California gallery owner Carlos Rivera, who runs the Rivera and Rivera gallery in West Hollywood. Supposedly based on algorithms and software that was designed for world financial markets, ArtRank provides collectors with information about whether to buy or sell the work of particular artists at particular price points, much in the way that financial analysts recommend the purchase or sale of particular stocks.

Many in the art community originally took the website to be some sort of cruel joke at the expense of other artists, as the website was originally named sellyoulater.com, but Rivera assures potential clients that the service is entirely dedicated to provided the best possible speculative analysis for art collectors and investors. A paid section of the site is available to 10 subscribers, who pay $3,500 USD per quarter to get access to the latest data three weeks before the information is made publicly and freely available on the website.

Needless to say, this is likely to generate a great deal of ill will, and artificially modify the nature of the art market if it gets too widespread a hold. That may not inherently be a bad thing, but one must wonder as an artist if there is such a thing as treating the collecting world too coldly. Of course, for any artists who are ranked in the buy categories, it could be a huge boon to their careers, driving collectors to purchase, but there is the possibility that, as in the financial markets, artificially-generated booms and busts may be more than the art world can handle. There has already been a great deal of speculation that the art world is in something of a price bubble, but ArtRank may change all that in one fell swoop.

Take swing by ArtRank and check it out for yourself - have you been ArtRank-ed?

Posted on July 03rd 2014 on 07:46pm
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