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The Economics of Latin American Art: Creativity Patterns and Rates of Return

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  • Sebastian Edwards

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    Abstract

    In this paper I use a large data set to analyze two aspects of the Latin American arts: (1) the nature of artistic creative process, and (2) Latin American art as an investment. I use data on auctions to understand the relation between artists' age and the value of their work. The analysis on creativity suggests that Latin American artists have followed very different patterns from that followed by U.S. artists. There is strong evidence suggesting that American artists born after 1920 did their best work at an earlier age than their older colleagues; exactly the opposite is true for the case of Latin America. Indeed, the results reported in this paper suggest that Latin American artists born after 1920 did their best work at a significantly older age than their colleagues from earlier cohorts. The analysis of art as an investment is based on the estimation of hedonic price indexes, and indicates that Latin American art has had a relatively high rate of return indeed much higher than that of other type of paintings. The results also indicate that returns on Latin American art have a very low degree of correlation that is, a very low beta relative to an international portfolio comprised of equities. This means that adding Latin American art will lower the overall risk of an international portfolio

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    File URL: http://www.brookings.edu/press/Journals/2004/economiaspring2004.aspx
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION in its journal JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA.

    Volume (Year): (2004)
    Issue (Month): ()
    Pages:

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    Handle: RePEc:col:000425:008675

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    Related research

    Keywords: Economics of art; auctions; Latin America; art as an investment;

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    Cited by:
    1. Barbosa, Renata Leite & Campos, Nauro F, 2008. "Paintings and Numbers: An Econometric Investigation of Sales Rates, Prices and Returns in Latin American Art Auctions," CEPR Discussion Papers 6806, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Richard Agnello & Xiaowen Xu, 2006. "Art Prices and Race: Paintings by African American Artists and Their White Contemporaries," Working Papers 06-06, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
    3. Heinrich Ursprung & Christian Wiermann, 2008. "Reputation, Price, and Death: An Empirical Analysis of Art Price Formation," CESifo Working Paper Series 2237, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Addison, Tony, 2006. "The International Mobility of Cultural Talent," Working Paper Series RP2006/108, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    5. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:26:y:2006:i:3:p:1-13 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Andrew Worthington & Helen Higgs, 2006. "A Note on Financial Risk, Return and Asset Pricing in Australian Modern and Contemporary Art," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 73-84, March.
    7. Joonwoo Nahm, 2010. "Price determinants and genre effects in the Korean art market: a partial linear analysis of size effect," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 34(4), pages 281-297, November.
    8. Michael Hutter & Christian Knebel & Gunnar Pietzner & Maren Schäfer, 2007. "Two games in town: a comparison of dealer and auction prices in contemporary visual arts markets," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 247-261, December.
    9. Richard J. Agnello, 2006. "Do U.S. Paintings Follow the CAPM? Findings Disaggregated by Subject, Artist, and Value of the Work," Working Papers 06-02, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.

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