Globalization and democratization of art, step by step, lead to global shifts in the art market. First and foremost, it concerns the matter of transparency, probably the most shadowy area of the industry. Art dealers of any caliber are notorious for obscuring prices, which results in a large number of manipulations, money-laundering schemes, and many other troubles caused by different players with vested interests. Why are transparency and trust so underregulated, why does it matter, and how can it be changed in the years to come? Explore some key facts below!
Transparency and Trust in the Art Market: Key Facts
There are as many laws as the flaws and holes in them
Transparent relationships between goods/services providers and clients are a cornerstone of any effective cooperation, which is protected by jurisprudence. In fact, there are many regulation laws in charge of administrating it, but they are often compromised, which creates grey areas.
It has been causing scandals for many years
The lack of insight and legibility of the bidding and purchasing processes is not new. Price transparency has been a serious pain in the neck for many collectors and auction buyers for decades. Truth be told, the art market is probably the only global industry with such poor regulation of prices nowadays.
The transparent art market is a new age in the history of collecting
If we see positive changes in the field in the near future, the chances are that it will open a new horizon for emerging collectors. Buying paintings and sculptures will be a much more favorable way of investment.
Internet and digitalization are the driving force of the transparency trend
Online sales, crowd-funding, and tokenization are some of the main elements of global change. With the more advanced database, you can clearly see the auction history of the item, differences in price between periods, latest condition reports, and previous ownerships.
It will take a lot of time for a system to change
The main issue with making the transactions more transparent is the matter of privacy, which is also well-protected by the law. That’s why the changes will take time before the government and the industry can find the balance between safety and effectiveness.
Ironically, the transparency problem is rather transparent nowadays. And even if little was done to prevent the whole situation from getting worse in the past, now we see the light at the end of the tunnel. Hopefully, the transition to a new art market reality will be as painless as possible.