Huffington Post Arts: Israeli Art Market on the Rise

Sigalit Landau, DEADSEE, 2004, Film Still
Israeli Art Market on the Rise
By Joanna Bledsoe, MutualArt Writer

Temperature isn't the only thing heating up in the Middle East -- the Israeli art market is on the rise, attracting international attention. The turnover in the last decade topped $180 million, reaching an all-time high of $36 million in 2007 before the global financial crisis. Though the crisis caused a dip in revenue, signs of recovery were seen starting in the second half of 2009. That said, Israeli art can only demand modest prices, as recent auctions in Tel Aviv and London exemplify. "There's a glass ceiling in Israeli art, unfortunately ... contemporary artists cannot obtain above €50,000-60,000, and I think it will take time for these prices to rise because the market is still developing and opening," says Tel Aviv gallery owner Shiri Benartzi. Currently, Mordechai Ardon holds the Israeli art record with a hammer price of $643,200 for Timepecker.

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