Digging Into the Past for New Art

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Germaine Richier in her studio on Avenue de Châtillon, Paris.

New York galleries are looking into the past for the next big thing.

Surging values for postwar and contemporary works are inspiring dealers and collectors to turn over every stone to rediscover artists long overlooked. Bloomberg reporter Katya Kazakina, who wrote about the trend, said most of the artists, like French sculptor Germaine Richier, are from Europe, and their work has not been shown here in many years.

Kazakina explained that the trend is motivated by the fact that a lot of collectors are priced out of the top of the market and because dealers have to meet a global demand for art. "Discovering and rediscovering an artist could be ultimately a lucrative proposition," she said.

She thinks this trend could last, especially because Americans have been culturally focused on American art created after World War II, like works of abstract expressionism. "There were parallel movements happening in Japan, Europe, and they were just overlooked," she said. "If money is to be made, then we are going to see a lot of these shows."