An empirical analysis of price differences for male and female artists in the global art market

Bocart, F.Y.R.P., Gertsberg, M. & Pownall, R.A.J. An empirical analysis of price differences for male and female artists in the global art market. J Cult Econ (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10824-020-09403-2

23 Pages Posted: 16 Feb 2020 Last revised: 20 May 2021

See all articles by Fabian Bocart

Fabian Bocart

Artnet Worldwide Corporation

Marina Gertsberg

Monash University

Rachel A.J. Pownall

Tilburg University - Department of Finance; Maastricht University - Department of Finance

Date Written: August 27, 2018

Abstract

We study prices paid at auction for artworks created by male and female artists, based on birth-identified sex, and how these prices have evolved over time. Artworks produced by female artists comprise less than 4% of art auction sales; after controlling for artwork characteristics, we find that artworks by female artists are 4.4% more expensive than artworks by male artists. In the top echelon of the art market—for sales above $1 million—artworks by male artists sell for 18.4% more than by female artists. The top 40 artists represent 40% of total market share; no female artist makes the top 40 ranking of artists in terms of total sales value at auction in the period under study, 2000–2017. However, for contemporary artists, our empirical results show that works by male artists sell for 8.3% more than their female counterparts. Overall, this study highlights significant price differences across birth-identified sex in the secondary market for fine art.

Keywords: Art market, Auctions, Gender economics, Labour economics

JEL Classification: J24, J31, J71, Z11

Suggested Citation

Bocart, Fabian and Gertsberg, Marina and Pownall, Rachel Ann Jane, An empirical analysis of price differences for male and female artists in the global art market (August 27, 2018). Bocart, F.Y.R.P., Gertsberg, M. & Pownall, R.A.J. An empirical analysis of price differences for male and female artists in the global art market. J Cult Econ (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10824-020-09403-2, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3079017 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3079017

Fabian Bocart

Artnet Worldwide Corporation ( email )

233 Broadway
Floor 26
New York City, NY 10279
United States

Marina Gertsberg (Contact Author)

Monash University ( email )

Australia

Rachel Ann Jane Pownall

Tilburg University - Department of Finance ( email )

P.O. Box 90153
Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

Maastricht University - Department of Finance ( email )

Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
1,087
Abstract Views
8,940
rank
24,901
PlumX Metrics