Wealthy millennials boosting the art market
CGTN

The global art market experienced another uptick in 2018, helped by an increase in the spending power of millennials, a report published by UBS and Art Basel said on Friday.

A survey of wealthy individuals conducted by UBS and art economist Clare McAndrew for the report found millennials were buying art more actively and frequently taking to the Internet to do so. It found that more of them were willing to shell out big money on art than their older peers.

They also provided a boost for female artists.

“For a generation that might never own a car, their appetite for buying art is encouraging,” UBS Group Chief Marketing Officer Johan Jervoe told Reuters.

An exterior view of Sotheby's auction house on New Bond Street in London, February 15, 2007. /VCG Photo

An exterior view of Sotheby's auction house on New Bond Street in London, February 15, 2007. /VCG Photo

“It may be a reflection of the unique and often experiential qualities of art and collectibles as long-term assets.”

Overall sales in the art market grew 7 percent to 67.4 billion U.S. dollars in 2018, according to UBS and Art Basel's third annual art market report.

People between 22 and 37 years of age made up nearly half of the wealthy art buyers who regularly spent 1 million U.S. dollars or more on an artwork over the past two years, the survey found, despite representing just over a third of the high-net-worth individuals surveyed.

A young visitor looks at the Sotheby's New York display of the only privately owned collection of every Supreme skate deck ever manufactured for the online-only sale “20 Years of Supreme” in New York, U.S., January 18, 2019. /VCG Photo

A young visitor looks at the Sotheby's New York display of the only privately owned collection of every Supreme skate deck ever manufactured for the online-only sale “20 Years of Supreme” in New York, U.S., January 18, 2019. /VCG Photo

The results of the survey, conducted in Britain, Germany, Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong of China, offered a silver lining for the art world as geopolitical and economic worries have weighed on overall sentiment.

As millennials grow into greater wealth, and benefit from a generational shift in wealth inherited from aging parents, their wealth could reach 24 trillion U.S. dollars by 2020, according to Deloitte.

Millennials' spending habits could provide significant potential for both online sales and art's squeezed middle, Jervoe said, benefiting the industry's overall health.

Visitors take pictures of the artwork "Love is in the Bin" by British street artist Banksy at the Frieder Burda Museum in Baden-Baden, southwestern Germany, February 5, 2019. /VCG Photo

Visitors take pictures of the artwork "Love is in the Bin" by British street artist Banksy at the Frieder Burda Museum in Baden-Baden, southwestern Germany, February 5, 2019. /VCG Photo

This younger generation of collectors with over 1 million U.S. dollars in household assets to spend or invest helped buoy the digital art marketplace to 6 billion U.S. dollars sales last year.

And a majority of them also took to photo-sharing social media platform Instagram to source and buy art pieces.

Between 2016 and 2018, 93 percent of the millennials made purchases online, spending 106,930 U.S. dollars on average, while the slightly older Generation X - between 38 and 52 years of age -spent around half a million dollars on an average web purchase, but did so with less frequency.

(Cover: Woman Before a Mirror by Danish artist Vilhelm Hammershoi goes on view as part of the 19th Century European Paintings sale at Sotheby's in London, U.K., December 8, 2017. /VCG Photo)

Source(s): Reuters