An Introduction to the Korean Art Market
I recently wrote a post on the increasing interest in Korean art (see here) which proved to be rather popular due to a lack of information available on Korean art so I thought that I would continue on from that post with an analysis of the Korean art market. Having benefited from the explosion of the Chinese economy as well as growth of their own economy which has been fuelled by Asia and Europe’s appetite for Korean made products, Korea is on track to become one of the wealthiest countries in the world. This means that more and more Korean’s will be looking for different ways to spend their money and methods to diversify their investment portfolios.
Following in the footsteps of their newly wealthy neighbours (India and China), Koreans are beginning to embrace the idea of art as an investment as is evident by the emergence of several Korean art investment funds such as the Seoul Art Fund and the Star Art Fund as well as an increase in the number of commercial galleries. The turnover of Korea’s two largest art auction houses saw an increase of 250% to US$63 million in 2006 compared to 2005 which gives a good indication of the growth that the Korean art market is experiencing.
Further enhancing the attractiveness of art as an investment is the recently implemented new corporation tax law which allows works of art to be regarded as corporate assets for business purposes thus removing the burden of paying taxes on gains from art transactions. All in all the current economic growth and interest in fine art that Korea is experiencing has exposed a whole new market to the art world and has provided a fantastic opportunity for investors to benefit from a market that is still in it’s infancy.
To help you get acquainted with Korean art I have listed ten of the top Korean artists below along with a link to further details:
Hong Kyong Tack
Choong Sup Lim
**Nicholas Forrest is an art market analyst, art critic and journalist based in Sydney, Australia. He is the founder of artmarketblog.com, writes the art column for the magazine Antiques and Collectibles for Pleasure and Profit and contributes to many other publications.