China is now world`s largest art, antiques market

Beijing: China has overtaken the US as the world`s biggest market for art and antiques, according to a report.

The historic turning point was also an important indicator of seismic shifts in the wider global economy, said the report titled ‘The International Art Market in 2011’.

The study was released by the European Fine Art Foundation, organisers of the European Fine Art Fair, Xinhua reported.

China`s share of the global art market rose from 23 percent in 2010 to 30 percent last year, pushing the US to second place with a share of 29 percent, it said.

The British art market, which was overtaken by China in 2010, was third with a 22-percent market share while France was a distant fourth with a share of six percent.

Sales of art and antiques at auctions in China saw a dramatic rise of 177 percent in 2010 and a further 64 percent increase in 2011. The modern and contemporary sectors accounted for nearly 70 percent of the market.

With strong growth seen in China, the global art market continued to recover last year.

Sales revenue grew seven percent year-on-year, but was 63 percent higher than in the crisis-hit 2009.

"The dominance of the Chinese market has been driven by expanding wealth, strong domestic supply and the investive drive of Chinese art buyers," said Clare McAndrew, a cultural economist specialising in the fine and decorative art market.


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