Artnet once again teamed up with the China Association of Auctioneers (CAA) to present the 6th annual edition of the Global Chinese Art Auction Market report ( full report:,  absolutely the only report of its kind offering a in-depth analysis of  Chinese art and antiques market trends.

Here all main points reported:


  • Global Auction Sales Are Up: This year total sales for Chinese art totaled $7.1 billion, a with a 7% increase from the previous year, but still lower that the $10 billion on 2011.
  •  Demand for Top Lots is Stronger Than Ever: As we noticed also in Western art sales, Chinese are more and more wiling to pay 7/8 or even 9 figures price on true masterpieces, with notable increase in the ultra-high-end market ( lots  valued above $14 million (¥100 million). In 2017, 38 lots sold in this bracket, more than double the number reported in 2016 and nearly 10 times the 2013 total. This year,  Chinese top-selling artist Qi Baishi has joined the so-called $100 million club, as other of blue-chip stars like Picasso, Modigliani, Bacon, Munch, and Warhol:  At a Poly International auction in Beijing this past December, a 1925 hanging scroll by Qi Baishi sold for $141 million.
  •  Prices for Fine Chinese Paintings and Calligraphy Are Also Robust, always especially in the hight-end market
  •  Prices for 20th-Century and Contemporary Chinese Art keep on rising  in Overseas market:  The average price now for this category of work hit $207,42, with a 19%increase from last year. Also sell-through rate also remained high at 60%.
  • On the other hand, Sell-Through Rates for Chinese Art & Antiques Plummeted Abroad : In 2017, the percentage of Chinese art and antiques that found buyers at auction outside the mainland dropped significantly, continuing a downward trend seen in previous years. The rate decreased from 69 % in 2011
  • By the way,  North America Saw a Major Boost in Sales of Chinese Art, also in antiquity: Total sales value of Chinese art and antiques sold in North America on a year-over-year basis increased by 62%.  This number however was bolstered just  by a very lucky March 2017 auction at Christie’s New York of art from the Fujita Museum, totaling alone $262 millions.
  •  In China, Mid- and Low-End Sections of the Auction Market Are Suffering: The report says smaller auction houses are still struggling to make ends meet, with most of them in “hibernation,” meaning they held no sales that year.
  • But this is the main problem,   Buyers Paying for Less Than Half Their Purchases: According to the report, among all lots sold there in 2017, only 49% of  the percentage of the total sales value was, the lowest such figure since 2011. The nonpayment rate is even greater when applied to lots over ¥10 million ($1.5 million) for which only 28% of the value had been paid.

>> Read the full report here (

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