Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business Professor Releases – the 2023 Annual MM Chinese Art Indices

January 12, 2024

Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business’ Professor of Finance, Dr. Mei Jianping, releases the 2023 annual MM Chinese Art Indices, which comprise of four new sub-indices and an individual artist index. The latest edition of the MM Chinese Art Indices shows that the Price Index rose between early 2001 and the end of 2023 from 1 to 9.5, at an annual compound growth rate of 10.3%. The Price Index shows that the market fell at a slower rate than in the previous two years, by 11.7% in 2023. From 2001 to 2023, the MM Chinese Art Price Index outperformed the ARTDAI Impressionism Price Index, with a compound annual growth rate of 2.1%, as well as the ARTDAI Contemporary Art Index, with a compound annual growth rate of 6.4%, a signal of the investment value in Chinese art. The Sentiment Index indicates that the market had partially recovered by the fall of 2023, after a stagnant phase during the global pandemic.

Two new sub-indices for ink paintings and oil paintings are launched – the ink painting index of artists specializing in Chinese ink wash art, and the oil painting index of artists working predominantly in oil paintings. These two sub-indices found that from 2001 to 2023 the annualized rate on investment for oil paintings was 11.5%, higher than for ink paintings with a ROI of 8.8%. However, it found that ink paintings suffered less market volatility. Another two new sub-indices focused on modern and contemporary Chinese art respectively, revealed that the Contemporary Art Index won out (11.8%) over the Modern Art Index (9.1%) but experienced more market volatility between 2001 and 2023. The Modern Art Index considers Chinese artists born before 1911, and the Contemporary Art Index studies those born after 1911.

The newly added individual artist price index of Zao Wou-Ki shows that the sales volume of the Sino-French artist’s work at three major auction houses in the 21st century totaled USD1.58 billion, ranking him sixth among contemporary artists. Affected by COVID-19, Zao’s transaction volume decreased from USD 190 million in 2019 to USD 30 million in 2023. However, with a compound annual growth of 11.9%, Zou’s works are expected to grow steadily in the long term.

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