πŸ€” Asian Collectors: Changing Game?

Emi Kuraya: A Youthful Vision + ART SG: Asia's Artistic Hub + Shanghai Fairs: A Reflective Outlook + Auction Highs: Sotheby's and Phillips

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HEY Y’ALL! πŸ”₯

Welcome to the 586 new art lovers who joined last week.

Art in a Flash is a series from Frame&Flame that offers a concise roundup of the week's standout artists, pivotal collections, and key market shifts.

This week’s Art in a Flash includes:

  • 🌟 Rising Artist: Emi Kuraya, a contemporary Japanese artist, renowned for her anime and manga-influenced style, capturing the transition from adolescence to adulthood in urban settings.

  • πŸ’­Β Your Questions Answered: Delving into the evolving role of Asian art collectors and their diverse impact on the global art market, challenging stereotypes and highlighting their varied tastes and strategies.

  • πŸ”— Market Stories: Singapore's ART SG elevating the Asian art market, Shanghai's reflective art fairs amidst censorship, record-breaking auction results at Sotheby's and Phillips, and more.

Read Time 05 minutes

🌟 Rising Artists

Emi Kuraya, Dancing (2022)

πŸ€” What you need to know:Β Emi Kuraya, born in 1995, is a burgeoning talent in the world of contemporary Japanese art. A product of Tokyo’s Tama Art University, Kuraya has quickly made a name for herself with her distinctive style. Her work, deeply rooted in Japanese culture, particularly shines in the way it incorporates elements of anime and manga. Despite her youth, she's had solo exhibitions in prestigious venues such as Perrotin Seoul and Shanghai, and has graced international art fairs like Art Basel and Frieze New York. Kuraya's art, often exploring the transition from adolescence to adulthood, captures the essence of young city life through a lens that is both surreal and deeply personal.

βœ… Recent career milestone: Ness's career has been on a steady ascent with numerous solo and group exhibitions. Notable recent shows include "Art Cologne" in Germany, "Threads" in Seoul, and "Studio Visitor" in New York. Her work has been collected by prestigious institutions such as the Yale University Art Gallery, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, and the Albertina Museum in Vienna. These accolades and her consistent presence in significant exhibitions speak volumes about her growing influence in the contemporary art scene.

😍 Why I Like It: What sets Kuraya apart is her unique ability to blend the whimsical and the profound. Her work, often featuring young women in urban settings, strikes a balance between vulnerability and strength, innocence and experience. The large-eyed, expressive characters drawn from anime and manga traditions speak to a universal audience, transcending cultural boundaries. There's a delightful ambiguity in her art β€” a playful dance between reality and fantasy, seriousness and whimsy. Kuraya's paintings are a window into the soul of contemporary youth, reflecting its joys, sorrows, and complexities. Her mastery in using oil paints adds a timeless quality to her pieces, making them not just visually stunning but emotionally resonant as well.

πŸ’­Β Your Questions Answered

This week, we turn our focus to the evolving role of Asian art collectors in the global market. It's time to address a critical question:

How are these collectors reshaping perceptions and practices within the art world?

At the heart of this inquiry lies the challenge of outdated stereotypes. The prevailing view suggests that Asian collectors have uniform tastes and are primarily driven by investment returns. However, this perspective is far too narrow and fails to capture the complex realities of the Asian art market.

Firstly, the diversity of Asian collectors' tastes is vast, spanning from traditional artworks to contemporary pieces. This range reflects the varied cultural landscapes of Asia, a fact often overlooked in the West-centric view of the art world. Secondly, while investment value is undeniably a factor, it's not the sole driver for many Asian collectors. Passion for art, cultural heritage, and a desire to support artists play equally significant roles.

The Asian art market, especially in regions like China and Southeast Asia, is growing rapidly. This growth is not just in terms of sales but also in influence, as Asian collectors play a pivotal role in shaping global art trends. Their engagement in international art fairs and auctions is a testament to this growing influence.

Moreover, the collecting strategies of Asian art enthusiasts are varied. While some are methodical and research-driven, others are guided by personal taste and spontaneity. This diversity challenges the stereotype of the homogenous Asian collector.

Finally, the role of Asian collectors in promoting local and regional artists cannot be overstated. Their support is crucial in bringing these artists to the global stage, thereby enriching the global art narrative.

Have a question about the art market you want answered? Send me an email

πŸ”— Market Stories

  • 🎨 Singapore's ART SG is elevating the bar with its second edition this January, showcasing an impressive roster of 116 galleries, including heavyweights like Gagosian, White Cube, and Lehmann Maupin. This event is shaping up to be a pivotal moment in the Asian art market.

  • πŸŒ† In Shanghai, the confluence of West Bund Art & Design and ART021 Shanghai Contemporary Art Fair stirred a complex brew of emotions. Attendees grappled with the impact of stringent government censorship and uncertain economic predictions, casting a reflective mood over the events.

  • πŸ” Sheena Wagstaff, with her illustrious tenure at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Tate Modern, steps into a new role as creative advisor for Frieze Masters. Wagstaff's recent triumph with the Studio section at Frieze Masters 2023 speaks volumes of her curatorial prowess.

  • πŸ’° Sotheby's Now sale witnessed a landmark moment as Julie Mehretu's "Walkers With the Dawn and Morning" fetched a record-breaking $10.7 million. The night, encompassing the contemporary evening sale, amassed a grand total of $305.7 million, cementing the auction house's position in the art market.

  • πŸ“‰ Phillips's joint sale with the Triton Collection Foundation, along with their 20th century and contemporary art evening sale, tallied $154.6 million, subtly hinting at market fluctuations with figures slightly below expectations.

  • 🌍 The art world was jolted as Extinction Rebellion activists disrupted Christie's New York sale. Their impassioned cry, "No art on a dead planet!" during the Impressionist & Modern Works on Paper sale, underscored the intertwining of art, activism, and environmental concerns.

  • πŸ”„ The gallery landscape is in flux with White Cube representing Richard Hunt and Magenta Plains taking on Stan VanDerBeek's archive. Galerie Papillion embraces Mehdi-Georges Lahlou, Stephen Friedman welcomes Clare Woods, and David Kordansky introduces former JTT artist Sam McKinniss, signaling dynamic shifts in artist representation.

  • πŸš€Β Fionna Flaherty's ascension to partner at Lehmann Maupin marks a significant career milestone, promising fresh insights and directions for the gallery.

  • 🎭 Lisson Gallery's postponement of Ai Weiwei's exhibition, amidst the artist's controversial statements on social media, reflects the complex interplay between art, politics, and social discourse.

  • 🌟 India's art scene is set for a transformation with the Jindal family's announcement of Hampi Art Labs, promising to infuse the southern landscape with contemporary artistic endeavors.

  • πŸ“š In a move reflecting the urgency of inclusivity in the arts, Colette Pierce Burnette steps down from Newfields amidst a racial diversity scandal, highlighting the ongoing challenges within institutional structures.

  • πŸ–‹ Poet Ranjit Hoskote's resignation from Documenta 16's selection committee in response to political controversies underlines the intricate nexus between art and global socio-political narratives.

  • 🌏 Singapore's announcement of Robert Zhao Renhui as its representative for the Venice Biennale 2024, curated by Haeju Kim, signals a fresh and interdisciplinary approach to the prestigious event.

  • πŸ”­Β Mohamed Almusibli's appointment as director of Kunsthalle Basel heralds a new era for the institution, possibly steering it towards innovative and diverse artistic explorations.

  • πŸ“œ The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation's rebuttal to allegations of estate mismanagement illustrates the intricate challenges faced by artist estates and foundations in safeguarding legacies.

  • 🎨 Aaron De Groft's legal battle with the Orlando Museum of Art over the controversial Basquiat exhibition and subsequent FBI raid reveals the complexities of authenticity, reputation, and governance within the art world.

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πŸ“š What I’m Reading

Many of you have been inquiring about my go-to book recommendations for navigating the art market. Well, the wait is over. Here's a curated list of my all-time favorites:

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