Art Basel Shows Good Sales

Despite the uncertainties around the economy and security, Art Basel showed good sales for 2017, much the same as the recent peak 3 years ago in 2014.

“People are in the mood to buy,” said Eleanor Acquavella, as the work by Jean-Michel Basquiat's Three Delegates (1982) sold for between $15 million and $20 million.

She was one of a number of dealers showing paintings by the newly sought-after artist, following last month’s record-breaking sale of an untitled 1982 painting at Sotheby’s for $110.5 million to Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa.

“All of a sudden it seems cheap,” Acquavella said of the eight-figure sum paid for her painting.

By all indications, she said, the market is strong, with wealthy patrons allocating ever more money to art. Art, she said, has “been proven to be a good investment time and time again.”

The spree is being attributed to many factors – mostly preceded by the adjective "more". More confidence, more millionaires, more billionaires with more sophisticated (sceptics might say more gullible) taste, more Asian spending, more museum and institutional buying etc., to which I would add more sales information, concluded Colin Gleadell of Daily Telegraph in his report.