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October 26, 2008

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Except the public (British) galleries rely on sponsorship from large corporations - mainly banks. The recession plus the Olympics could be disastrous.

One of these years I'll get to Frieze et al...

Obviously you're right on funding. The Tate Modern's deal with UBS needs renewing any time now, I believe. UBS, of course, being an interesting case: had they failed six months later they would have completely disappeared.

But if the smaller/edgier galleries/dealers/curators and the monstrous fairs and biennials are retreating to activity that's easier to sell or fund, we may see some of them disappearing, or at least losing their position as a key driver of influence this last decade. Perhaps: influence polarising, accreting around museums and larger galleries, and around the non-commercial/alternate art activity like the Free Art Fair.

Two things that might be interesting:

The Business of Art, a research project in Australia: http://blogs.usyd.edu.au/bizart/

Roberston's The Art Business (2007), whose synposis says "By the time you read this book, the art world may have witnessed the sale of its first $500 million painting":
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Art-Business-Iain-Robertson/dp/041539158X/

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