Insurer Probes the Who and What of Collecting

Some people do still collect, in fact the number of collectors may be more than ever. Insurer AXA Art recently released a survey revealing a rapidly expanded art market over the last decade as well as notable numbers of new collectors in advancing economies.

The survey of 1,000 international collectors revealed four distinct categories of collectors, the art aficionado (37%), traditionalists (16%), investors (24%) and hybrid collectors (23%).

The average collector is an educated male aged 40-69. One in ten had collections valued over $1,000,000, but almost half remained silent about the value. Sixty-five percent collected using gut instinct, while only five percent followed the advice of a curator. And good news for shows, almost all (95 percent) said they used the web for research before an actual acquisition and 34 percent used the internet for purchases. A greater number (45 percent) refused to make purchases online.


About Art After X

With the death of President Kennedy in 1963, America changed. As hard as it is to minimize that sentiment, the effect of Dallas was even greater. The same year saw the merging of the Dallas Museum for Contemporary Arts, which had been central to the art scene, and the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. Douglas MacAgy, then the director of DMCA, not only opposed the merger, but also declined to directorship of the combined museum. The regionalist movement which had been strong for decades, was giving way to more of an interest in what was going on nationally, and internationally. Like it or not, Dallas was on the national stage. When the Kennedy’s arrived in Fort Worth, local collectors had decorated a hotel room with internationally-renowned works. While the president and his wife learned a great deal about the ability of Texans to collect major art, there was little they could glean about the local scene in this era-defining city. With this in mind, we have begun a project to look not back at the art scene in Dallas, but foreword from 1963. We are interviewing gallery owners, curators and others involved in the art scene then, but this will be a story told mostly through interviews with artists active in the city from that point into the 1980s. The result will be a book with a video component. We hope you will join us in our journey. The hashtag for the project is #artafterx and the url will point to the latest updates on this weblog.