The Art Market Day 2018


I am very happy to have you here. Your questions and your debates are our debates. The discussions we have on a daily basis and at every level with you, professionals, are absolutely essential to us. Things have changed radically. Today words and values like globalisation, multilateralism, solidarity, ethics, are words that still have value and that resonate in the art world and its market. I believe that you are now convinced that new technologies, blockchain, smart contracts the massive arrival of the millenials is profoundly going to change the art market in the coming years. I believe we’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg because the art market, as you’ve heard, kept its early 20th century methods and because it is very reluctant to change. We tried and present it with a identifiable graphic chart, once again, not limiting ourselves to the number of views and likes but with the idea that when you scroll your Instagram feed, the Artcurial post stands out. When we talk about ressources, one must keep in mind the three types of resources that you have to account for: internal ressources (staff and its day to day cost), content creation – even simple iPhone pictures are content creation that you have to think and produce, and then there’s the content dissemination, be it organically or through sponsoring. One must try and keep some balance between the three. Having a media budget but no content creation budget is useless, having someone in charge of Instagram with no content to post is useless. You really need to have these three aspects in mind. – The association who claimed certain items from the Tervuren museum to be returned to Congo – The CRAN ?
– The CRAN. – The Representative Council for Black Associations.
– Its equivalent in Brussels – BAMCO. They made me aware of something: you know, restitution doesn’t have to be necessarily physical, they actually find solutions for that. It is moral. It is a question of dignity. When you prevent debate, this is when people get offended. The whole thing didn’t start in Ouagadougou, it started a year before. It is a good thing today that the debate can get started on restitutions, that can play at different levels:
the legal level, since we’re talking about classifications,
imprescriptible items. There’s also, on the other end, a mirror effect, because on the one hand there’s Africa and on the other hand there are the big museums, there are the private dealers – But that’s something else.
– Yes it is, yes it is. The question is what do we do,
and what is the African responsibility? At some point, States also have a responsability. The same way there is not one single art market, but several markets that overlap, that interact with or ignore each other, neither is there a single typology of collectors, but as many personalities as there are collectors.

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