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1.1 Definition and scope of study

The art market refers to the production of and trade of works of art and antiques. The art dealer and gallery market focuses on art dealers, which accounted for 58% of global art sales in 2019, and therefore excludes auctions (42% of global sales) which are the subject of another study.

According to Wondeur AI's classification, the production of works of art is divided between the star artists (1% of artists in the world), the renowned artists (1%), the established artists(14%) and the emerging and under-represented artists (84%).

The art market can also be segmented by category of work (sculpture, painting etc.), by period (contemporary, modern etc.) and by price range.

Global art dealer sales were worth US$36.8 billion in 2019, a slight increase of 2% over 2018. However, players with sales of less than $1 million experienced a sharp decline (- 9%) in contrast to those with sales between $250,000 and $500,000 (+ 17%).

The biggest challenges for the next 5 years cited by art dealers in 2019 will be to find new customers and to deal with the economic environment and geopolitical issues that strongly influence the demand for art.

In 2019, art dealer and gallery sales accounted for nearly two thirds of French art sales . The French art market is characterized by its high stability . The current economic situation also favours galleries and art dealers, who are considered more secure than auctions. The specific features of the French market, which is less speculative, more fragmented and diversified, also play in its favour. Thus, in 2020, 65% of art dealers and gallery owners expect their sales to remain stable or increase over the next five years. 

In addition, the digitalization of the market accelerated during the containment due to the Covid-19 outbreak. This digitisation is not only manifested by the emergence of online galleries and platforms such as Singulart, Kazoart or Artsper, but also by the growing influence of online information tools and social networks such as Instagram.






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