Editorial by thierry Ehrmann

thierry Ehrmann, President and Founder of Artmarket.com and its Artprice division

The pandemic which hit the world unexpectedly in 2020 forced the Art Market to accelerate a digitization process that was long overdue.

Twelve months ago the art industry showed a certain disdain for anything connected with digital culture… a disdain resulting in a reluctance to implement efficient IT tools. This reluctance seems to have lasted for almost thirty years, resulting in a cumulative delay for the whole sector. But not entirely… because during all of this time Artprice has been exploring the digital possibilities inherent to the Art Market with conviction and creativity, substantially preparing the ground for what was simply inevitable.

And so – despite the massive difficulties associated with the pandemic – it has been with tremendous enthusiasm that our company has supported all players in the Art Market as they take on the historic challenge of trying to eliminate in a few months (sometimes even a few weeks) the impact of three decades of obstinacy.

The world’s major auction houses are today models of adaptability. However it is remarkable to observe that the paradigm shift seems to have reached all of the market’s players, local and international, large and small. They all appear to have agreed to enter the digital era irreversibly by dematerializing large segments of their operations. As is often the case, the private sector has shown much greater flexibility and inventiveness than public institutions.

The Art Market has now constructed the framework for a new economic model and reached a new equilibrium that the most optimistic projections weren’t expecting before 2025. It is now much better equipped for this ‘other way’ of living and collecting… that of the digital 21st century.

With this 24th Annual Art Market Report, Artprice and its exclusive partner Artron are proud to provide a free global analysis of this long-awaited transformation.