Friday, September 09, 2016


The short-term implications of Brexit on the British art market show signs of a slowdown.  Immediately after the vote, auction houses in London hosted their annual Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary sales.  Given the cheaper pound, international buyers looking to London for bargains helped bolster these sales.  Nevertheless, while some artworks sold well, surpassing their high estimates, overall the sale levels were considerably lower than in 2015.  Many lots failed to sell altogether.  Lower sales levels were also partially due to the fact that fewer lots were offered.  Sellers are waiting for the volatility to subside before presenting their best pieces to the market.  There’s also a general decline in the level of auction guarantees being given by houses and, as a result, collectors are either waiting to sell or selling privately through dealers.


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