According to a recent report by ArtTactic, total auction sales for South Asian art increased by 0.5% in 2016 to $98.1 million, a robust result in an otherwise weakening global auction market. After strong growth between 2014 and 2015, last year saw the growth rate levelling out.
Part of the slow down can be attributed to last year’s announcement of the demonetisation of the 500 and 1,000 rupee notes. 60% of the market participants interviewed by ArtTactic believe a negative short-term impact will be felt by the South Asian art market, which could spill into 2017. However, the majority of experts believe the long-term impact of the demonetisation could also be a positive one (44% of the respondents), with only 11% seeing a long-term negative impact on the South Asian art market.