The evaluation of contemporary art with art historical and market criteria : the 3C Model




Richter, Till Florian Alexander

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For the most recent contemporary art no art historical or price records exist that can testify of its value. However, the market for contemporary art is enormous and the art historical interest in it is equally important. If we can find out how to evaluate contemporary art, it will further the art historical understanding, the market transparence and the sales of contemporary art thus having an influence also on the creation of art (William Grampp).

The art historical verdict and the market verdict are linked. This has been proven by a number of economists (Frey, Galenson, Grampp). The question is how they are linked. Basically, both art history and the market contribute to the creation of value in art. What is it that makes art valuable? What are the criteria used in art history and in the market to evaluate art?

The focus is on European and US American art between 1970 and today.

Evaluation, be it aesthetic or financial, is a process of decision making. Decisions are based on criteria that must be conscious at least after the decision is made (Clement Greenberg). In the art world, certain decision makers are more influential than others. Therefore the dissertation analyzes the most influential positions in art theory and in the art market and distills the essential criteria used.

The dissertation seeks to advance the research on this fundamental question of the evaluation of art through a more comprehensive and interdisciplinary study than those previously undertaken. It presents a model that integrates the most important criteria from both sides and allows a more reliable evaluation of contemporary art.

The 3C Model explains the ensemble of Quality-Value-Price through three criteria: Change, Connectivity and Context (Time, Space, People).

The 3C Model can be used as a general basis in the discourse on value and quality. It is a structural method that can be applied to almost any art from any period.

The model is exercised here using Gerhard Richter, François Morellet, Julian Schnabel, Jeff Koons, Sophie Calle and Pipilotti Rist as examples.




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