2011 Armory Art Show Spotlights Latin American Art

Latin American artists are in the spotlight at this year’s invitation-only exhibition at the Armory Art Show in Manhattan. Eighteen galleries from Peru, Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina—including a big contingent of galleries from Mexico and Brazil—are exhibiting the best of their country’s contemporary art.

Carmen Melian heads the Latin American Art Department at Sotheby’s auction house, which holds Latin American art sales twice a year.  She says that sales of Latin American art from all periods has reached $40 million–a far cry from the days when only a small number of local collectors bought art from the region. 

“Nowadays, you find very international collections, not only within Latin America, but also outside of Latin America,” Melian says. “Over 50 percent of our collectors or buyers are of non-Latin origin.”

At Sotheby’s and Christie’s auction houses, 2010 set new price records for many Latin American artists including Cuban artist Wilfredo Lam and Mexican painter Alfonso Michel. Most buyers hail from the U.S., Europe, and Asia.