Ocula Magazine   |   News   |   Artists

One has already brought in over US $30 million at auction this year.

Who Are the Top Young Artists at Auction in 2021?

Ayako Rokkaku, Untitled (ARP21-09) (2021). Acrylic on canvas. 140 x 200 cm. Courtesy KÖNIG GALERIE.

Five artists born after 1980 each brought in over US $5 million at auction in the first half of 2021, according to a new report by art market analysts ArtPrice.

Hong Kong painter Matthew Wong (1984–2019) leads the pack with sales of US $30 million.

New York artist Avery Singer (b. 1987) is next, with sales of $10.5 million, followed by Pakistan-born painter Salman Toor (b. 1983) with sales of $7.9 million.

Self-taught Japanese artist Ayako Rokkaku (b. 1982) has sold kawaii rainbow-hued works worth $7.2 million, while Amoako Boafo's (b. 1984) fingertip-paintings have sold for a combined $5 million.

All five artists have seen strong interest around the globe with the exception of Rokkaku, whose sales come overwhelmingly from Asia.

Looking at artists of any age, perennial auction earners Pablo Picasso, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Andy Warhol lead the highest-grossing artists at auction, but three living artists made the top ten.

Fifth-placed Banksy (b. 1974) has brought in over $123 million, seventh-placed Gerhard Richter (b. 1932) almost $98 million, and ninth-placed Yoshitomo Nara (b. 1959) almost $86 million.

The value of Banksy works at auction has grown exponentially over the past five years, from just $3 million in 2016.

The report also noted how quickly the secondary art market in Hong Kong is catching up with London. The UK had secondary art market sales nearly five times greater than the former British colony a decade ago, but that gap had closed to just 21% in the first half of 2021.

Hong Kong also generated by far the highest average price for artworks at auction. In Hong Kong the average work sold for $300,000, ahead of $32,000 in London and $41,000 in New York, though far more works of art went to auction in London and New York. —[O]

Ocula Logo