Interest in the visual arts all around the world has exploded over the past 20 years. There are more people collecting art now than at any other period in history, and they are collecting from a wider spectrum of artists and mediums.
Twenty years ago the number of people who went to galleries or auctions and purchased works of art was very small, and, on average, these people spent a lot of money on what they bought e.g. $20,000-50,000. In the last decade the number of people collecting art has grown though, on average, they are spending less.
Australian Aboriginal art encompasses ethnographic objects and contemporary painting, sculpture, and prints. The imagery and designs are based on mythological stories and a spiritual connection to land that has been passed down through a 40-thousand year history through the use of ancient iconography. It evokes the beauty, and spiritual significance of the artist’s homelands in the far-flung and remote regions of Australia.
On a red hot day, in the summer of 2008, I sat down in my rainforest retreat near Byron Bay on the east coast of Australia and began writing about my experiences during 40 years in the commercial art market. I had opened my first art gallery in 1977, been the Managing Director of Australia’s largest fine art auction house for a number of years, and was by then an independent art consultant and the owner of Australia’s oldest Aboriginal art gallery.
25th to 29th May 2018
Part road trip, part memoir, part history, part political commentary, The Dealer is the Devil is illuminatingly thought-provoking and provocative. It is an incredibly exciting and fast paced account of the fluctuating fortunes and exponential success of the Aboriginal art movement, with all of the elements one would expect of a complex drama, played out on a national and international stage.
"Every rock, every hill, every water, I know that place backwards and forwards, up and down, inside out. It`s my country and I got names for every place."Queenie McKenzie at Black Fellas Creek, Old Texas, 1995