Current Gallery Market vs. Future Gallery Market

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by Sean, Oct 1, 2003.

  1. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    Hi,

    I was just curious about the current "fine art" photography gallery market since I am not near any well known galleries. I'm also wondering how digital will affect this market. So, my questions are:

    1- Is the current market now 70% traditional 30% digital? or 70% digital and 30% traditional?

    2- Is there currently a major difference in price between a fine traditional print and say an iris print?

    3- Will the fine art market eventually crave traditional handcrafted photography and sell digital prints as if they are nothing more than nice 'posters'?

    I am not sure about 1&2, but for 3 I believe the demand for fine traditional prints will increase as the digital market grows. This would really hit the digital crowd hard, if and when their work is no longer valued...
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    In the New York galleries the vast majority of the work is still traditional, but in part that is because some of it is retrospective.

    The digital work one sees tends to be more visually and conceptually experimental--there has to be more there than the process to make it compelling. Digital work that makes it into the leading galleries and sells is less likely to be "straight" or "objective" photography.
     
  3. lee

    lee Member

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    The Afterimage Gallery in Dallas is mostly a traditional print type gallery. Every once in a while they will have a show that the artist uses digital output. ie Iris or inkjet prints.

    lee\c
     
  4. Thomassauerwein

    Thomassauerwein Member

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    I actually asked a similar question at Fahey/ Klein in Los Angelos a few weeks ago. They Had a (I'm guessing) 36x48 B/w Iris print of a Rock star portrait for I think it was 12000.00 (the print was great) so I asked the guy working there if they are selling many ink prints. He says the market is young and most people are stilll buying original process prints. But there is a market and it's growing. My instincts are like Sean's, they're two different beasts they will each have they're own market and as Iris grows in popularity the value of original material prints will increase. Probably because of the scarcity of those who use it as a medium. Right now the isis process still has problems handling grey value transitions and sharpness on fine art papers so I think we can take some comfort for a while that this market still has a lot of work to do. Commercially however It's here and if your in the commercial market and not up to speed I hope your ready for retirement!
     
  5. livemoa

    livemoa Member

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    Sean, I don't know if this is of much help, but James who runs Photospace here in Wellington is worth talking to on this subject, along with Paul McNamara in Wanganui.

    One thing I am aware of is resitance to ink jets at premium levels. Though some photogs are getting good prices for them (and crossing their collective fingers on archivale issues). There seems to be a belief that trad silver prints are more "collectabile" than inkjets, which pleases me as I print on Azo. On the other hand, the people I work for, who collect New Zealand art, don't seem to care what the medium is. If they like the work they buy it.

    Buy the way, nice shot from Makara, thats a good climb up there. Was it at the gun emplacements?
     
  6. mvjim

    mvjim Member

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    This is an issue which is just starting to boil up to the top. One thing we are seeing is a general "distrust" (archivaly speaking) of Iris prints and their like from serious collectors. Its not that they are not being bought, only that there is still so much confusing information (and general mis-information) on just how stable they really are. The "true value" of these we only be established once you begin to see them at auction. Its the auction (or secondary market) that determines any works real value.
    In other words - how much would you pay for an item if there was no limit on how much you could pay. But as Thomas states if you are involved in commercial photography of any type, its learn it or perish.
     
  7. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

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    Thanks, yes it was up at the top. I really loved it up there. It's one of those 'please scatter my ashes here when I die' kind of spots...
     
  8. Robert Kennedy

    Robert Kennedy Member

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    I agree. I think digital output is pretty much suspect when you start paying the big bucks. The people who buy fine art prints are usually pretty serious. More-so with the economic decline that is going on (and by that I mean less dot-com types running around simply buying "whatever" because the have too much money and want to look like they have culture). The fine art buyer will more likely be educated on the medium and not keen to plunk down $1,200 on something that will possibly fade in 10 years.

    I mean you have to keep the stuff around until at least the artist dies in some tragic fashion so you can cash in! :smile: