S. Korea's Arts Market Grows 25 pct on Higher Architectural Sculpture Demand | Be Korea-savvy

S. Korea’s Arts Market Grows 25 pct on Higher Architectural Sculpture Demand

(image: Yonhap)

(image: Yonhap)

SEOUL, Dec. 27 (Korea Bizwire)South Korea’s market for works of art grew nearly 25 percent in 2017 from a year earlier on increased demand for architectural sculptures, government data showed Thursday.

The total value of dealings of works of art reached 494.2 billion won (US$441.1 million) in 2017, up 24.7 percent from 2016 and the highest growth rate since 2008, when the first survey of the local art market was carried out by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Korea Arts Management Service.

A total of 35,678 pieces of art changed hands in the local art market last year, up 7 percent from a year earlier, according to their report.

The steep growth was driven by demand for large-size sculptures, often installed to decorate commercial buildings. Transactions of such sculptures more than doubled to 87.9 billion won in value in 2017, compared with 36.8 billion a year earlier.

Under Korea’s Culture and Arts Promotion Act, builders planning to set up structures bigger than 10,000 square meters in floor space are required to add architectural works of arts to the new buildings. Under the law nearly 1,500 pieces of art have been installed across the country since 1995, according to the data.

The data also showed art galleries accounted for 244.7 billion won of the total art market value of 494.2 billion last year, followed by auction houses with 149.3 billion won and art fairs with 65.5 billion won.

A total of 54,530 artists fielded their art works during some 7,790 local exhibitions, auctions and other art events held locally in 2017, while the average value of an art work sold at such events stood at 13.85 million won, up 16.5 percent from 2016′s average of 11.89 million won, according to the data.

The findings reflect the local art market’s upward trend. The market had initially peaked at 483.6 won in value in 2010 before shrinking for the next three years in a row to reach 324.9 in 2013. The market started to pick up again the next year and has since recorded steady growth every year.

The organizations said they had surveyed 455 local art galleries, 14 auction houses, 49 art fairs and 230 art museums.


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