The Art World, Blurred

Posted filed underArt Dealers, Art Market, Discussions, Galleries, Museums.

art world
“Not that long ago, auction houses concentrated on holding public sales and dealers put together their own shows, where the main point was to move merchandise. These days, the traditional conventions that once defined the art world seem to have evaporated. The auction giants Sotheby’s and Christie’s now run in-house art galleries and are increasingly selling art — just as a dealer would — privately.”

Carol Vogel of the New York Times has a look at the current transformation of the art world: ” Galleries are stepping up their game, opening multiple spaces around the globe to offer buyers the same kind of international reach as the auction houses. They are also calling on former museum curators and scholars to organize exhibitions with lavish, erudite catalogs. Often these shows have almost nothing for sale, and a surprising number of artworks are being lent by museums.

Artist foundations are going in new directions, too. The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts has been selling off its Warhol holdings for years. What’s left has recently been put in the hands of Christie’s to offer at auctions, held mostly online. The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation is using an old Chelsea warehouse to present the show “We The People,” its inaugural exhibition on view through Nov. 9. Organized by Alison Gingeras, an independent curator, and Jonathan Horowitz, an artist, it includes a disparate group of works reflecting in one way or another the American electorate.

Surprisingly, there is only one work on view by Mr. Rauschenberg himself. “We want to be experimental, to try new things and see what happens,” said Christy MacLear, the foundation’s director, who explained that using other artists’ voices helps to understand and connect with what Rauschenberg’s work is all about.

“All the traditional boundaries in every part of the art world have changed,” said William F. Ruprecht, Sotheby’s chief executive. “The art world has grown tremendously. Our clients have gotten much more mobile. Besides travel, they also rely on the Web. Everybody is more informed than ever.”

Read on at the New York Times.