The Art Market
This course will examine the history of the art market, from the 16th century to the present. We will study the production, sale and exchange of works of art as well as the patrons, artists and collectors who participate in this economic, social and political form of taste-making and aesthetic valuation. Students will learn about noted patrons of the arts, such as the Medici family in Renaissance Italy, our main focus will be on the creation of a global art market in the twentieth century. Using case studies, sample topics include: patterns of transportation, exchange and trade; the interaction of collectors, critics and curators; the spaces and contexts of display of contemporary collections; auction houses and commercial galleries; and fakes, forgeries, thefts and scandals. Special attention will be paid to considering the contemporary art market (post 1980) and the collecting, exchange and valuation of film, photography, painting, performance and installation art. Global markets for the exchange of art in Asia, Europe, Africa, North America and South America will be highlighted as well as the exhibitions of contemporary art such as the Art Basel, the Cairo Biennale and the Venice Biennale that fuel these markets.