The Global Art Market


Six stats


Sales in the global art market reached $63.7 billion in 2017, up 12% from 2016. Global art sales reached an estimated $67.4 billion in 2018 – an increase of 6% on 2017.


The volume of sales (number of transactions) grew more moderately than values, at 8% year-on-year.


In 2017, aggregate sales by dealers accounted for a larger share of the market, at 53% by value, with auction sales accounting for 47% (up 4% from 2016).


The three largest markets of the US, China and the UK accounted for 83% of total global sales by value.


The US was the largest market worldwide, accounting for 42% of sales by value, with China in second place (21%) and the UK the third largest market with 20%.


Sales in the major art markets all advanced year-on-year in 2017: in the US by 16% to $26.6 billion; in China by 14% to $13.2 billion; and in the UK by 8% to $12.9 billion.



Sales at public auction of fine and decorative art and antiques reached $28.5 billion in 2017, up 27% year-on-year. All of the fine art sectors increased in value year-on-year, including a 12% increase in the Post War and Contemporary sector to $6.2 billion, with sales of the work of living artists advancing by 19% to $2.6 billion.

Sales of Modern art increased 39% year-on-year to $3.6 billion, while the Impressionist and Post Impressionist increased in value by 71% to $2.3 billion.


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