Art as a Commodity

I know that my view of the art world is a bit skewed and jaded, but as of today, I am saddened by the thought that there are really no more Leo Castellis* or Mary Boones** who are actively looking for new artists to promote.

I get the feeling that of the biggest galleries in the city – Larry Gagosian, etc. – actually resist finding and grooming any new artists.  These now powerful galleries and directors deal in well established or dead artists.  Adding and grooming new artists would actually dilute their commodity.  It is as if gold is worth $500 an ounce.  Then a mining company finds a new vein where there are thousands of pounds of  ‘new’ gold. Would this not make the price of gold decrease?  In an economy where there are only so many people buying art is there really any reason to start bringing new artists into the mix.

Now I know that there are many galleries in the city, and many are showing emerging artists, plus the New Museum, the Whitney with the Biennial, cooperative galleries and so forth.  Not to mention every local arts’ center showing watercolors of barns and such, but will any of these artists’ work get into any catalog where it can be given some kind of objective value?

Is the only way for an artist to become famous is for them to create some kind of artwork with such a shock value that it would rise outside of the art world to be noticed.  Is there a way for a fine artist to become established now?

* Click Here for more on Leo Castelli

** Click Here for more on Mary Boone

Author: alanbrownart

I am a bitter, jaded artist, but otherwise in a good mood generally.

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