Rare Diamonds - A Beginners Guide To The Art Market by Guyan Porter

I recently went to a talk on artists led initiatives. There ensued a well informed debate about this ‘new’ model for art production, and how the transition is made from grass roots collective, to state funded institution. At a time when artists led initiatives and artist led organisation seem to be more common and widely recognised than ever before, I was interested in how groups, organisations, collectives and loose communities related to the art market, and what engagement there was with the economics of art production. In economic terms, public funding (government) is still a relatively small component in the economy of the visual arts, but one that does support, albeit indirectly, a high proportion of artists within the sector. With local authorities usually spending more than the national executive, and spending by artists on the production of art also far outweighing government funding levels, is the art market where the big money and decision making power lies? Governmental funding towards artists led initiatives in the UK, more and more seems to come with a push towards the market, with participating in art fairs being requisite.

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